Coal scam:Court reserves order on questioning of accused by CBI

Singhal's testimony is likely to strengthen the prosecution case.

New Delhi: A special court on Friday reserved for May 20 its order on whether a Jindal Group's chartered accountant, who is an accused and has sought to turn approver in a coal scam case involving industrialist Naveen Jindal and others, would be allowed to be questioned by CBI.

Special Judge Bharat Parashar reserved the order after CBI submitted that Suresh Singhal, also a director of New Delhi Exim Pvt Ltd, was required to join the probe to decide whether his assistance can strengthen the case.

"Singhal is required to make full length disclosure. We request the court to allow him to join the probe. There are documents which are to be verified. We must know the nature of testimony of this person (Singhal) and for that we need him to join the probe," special public prosecutor R S Cheema said.

"In order to answer the question (on whether to make him approver in the case and if he could be pardoned), we need his assistance in the probe," Cheema said, adding that Singhal was in possession of certain documents which could be useful for the prosecution.

He further said, "The testimony is likely to strengthen the prosecution case. However, no such document is produced by Singhal till date. The person seeking permission to turn approver must make full and true disclosure."

Meanwhile, advocate Asim Ali, who appeared for Singhal as amicus curiae, told the court that Singhal was in possession of various documents and could produce them as and when required.

The lawyers appearing for other accused told the court that, "what is required to dispose off this application is already with the court."

The court then reserved its order for May 20.

Earlier on May 11, the court had said that Singhal's statement be supplied to the CBI for rendering assistance on the issue. Following this, the documents were supplied to the probe agency.

The court had, however, clarified that issue of supplying the copy of Singhal's statement to the counsel representing other accused would be decided after hearing the arguments advanced by the probe agency.

While seeking pardon, Singhal had sought to make a disclosure statement in the case which was later recorded by a magistrate and was placed before the special judge in a sealed cover.

( Source : PTI )
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