HC quashes order asking CBI to return Delhi files

RSTV Bureau
File Photo: On January 20, a special court had directed CBI to return the papers seized during the raid on Rajendra Kumar, PS to CM Arvind Kejriwal.

File Photo: On January 20, a special court had directed CBI to return the papers seized during the raid on Rajendra Kumar, PS to CM Arvind Kejriwal.

In a big setback to Delhi government, the Delhi High Court today quashed a special court’s order directing CBI to return the documents seized during the raid on Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s principal secretary Rajendra Kumar’s office in December last year.

Following the CBI raid on Rajendra Kumar’s office, Delhi government had moved to a special CBI court demanding the release of the documents seized by the agency. Delhi government contended that the seizure of the documents had hampered its functioning. On January 20, the special court rule in favour of Delhi government.

Delhi High Court on Wednesday allowed the appeal filed by the CBI on February 1 against the trial court’s order. The agency had submitted that seizure of documents did not paralyse the functioning of the AAP government, as alleged.

A bench of Justice PS Teji said: “The appeal is allowed. The trial court order stands quashed.
In its appeal, CBI had said that at the “initial stage of investigation relevancy of the documents cannot be disclosed even if known to the probe agency, as it can do harm to the ongoing investigation”.

Opposing the trial court’s finding, Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for CBI, had said that the documents in its possession will “not hamper their (the Delhi government) functioning and it cannot be said that these are unrelated documents” and “the order has completely demoralised the investigating agency”.

The Delhi government had countered CBI’s contention, saying the “agency has picked up documents which have nothing to do with the investigation and it is hampering the government’s functioning”.

The agency had contended that the Special CBI Judge had failed to appreciate that the Delhi government has already obtained photocopies of the documents seized and thus the order of returning the documents was “wholly misconceived”.

(With inputs from agencies)