A division bench has held that files pertaining to corruption probes “apparently move from one office to another and then to the central office with different queries like a shuttlecock”. Everyone knows that the shuttlecock has a life and once that is over, it becomes worthless, it added.
Referring to data furnished by the ACB in response to the high court’s directions, the bench observed that in the Srinagar province, there were cases pending for sanction of prosecution for more than two years. “Apparent reason for sleeping over these matters is connivance with the accused. As a result, the conduct of these officers also need to be examined for abetting the crime and not letting the investigation reach the logical end,” it said.
ET has seen a copy of the strictures and directions passed by the division bench during the resumed hearing of a public interest litigation on protracted investigations in corruption cases. The court observed that the investigating agency and government departments involved in alleged corruption cases were “apparently, all co-sharers in the loot”. Hence, any cooperation in investigation cannot be to their benefit, it said, adding that the investigating agency had apparently surrendered before these “unscrupulous corrupt persons in the system”, who had either been directly arrayed as an accused in the FIR or conniving in not letting the investigation completed.
The court said: “In FIRs registered way back in the year 2008 under the Prevention of Corruption Act pertaining to the industries department, the current status of the investigation is mentioned as ‘posting details of the accused are being ascertained and some record is being obtained’.”