The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Centre to absorb Rajeshwar Singh, who has been probing the money laundering aspects in cases including the 2G scam, as permanent Deputy Director in the Enforcement Directorate within three days.
“The Central government shall confirm the permanent absorption of Rajeshwar Singh as Deputy Director within three days from on Monday ,” a bench of justices H L Dattu and S A Bobde said.
The bench came down heavily on the Centre for not complying with the directions of the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT), issued on December 24 last year, to absorb Singh on permanent basis with the ED.
It also clarified that the order of the CAT has to be complied with as the Centre failed to file a special leave petition in the Supreme Court after the Delhi High Court refused to stay the tribunal’s order in the matter.
Additional Solicitor General (ASG) L Nageswara Rao, appearing for the Centre, opposed the plea of Singh saying that the writ petition is still pending in the high court and order can be passed by the apex court only after the decision of the case by the high court.
The ASG informed the court that the money laundering probe in the 2G case and the Aircel-Maxis case are already over.
Raising the issue of Singh, BJP leader Subramanium Swamy had said that despite the apex court’s May 1 order he had not been reinstated into the investigation and it was not known “what powerful element are working” that he is out of the probe.
Singh had sought to recuse himself from the investigation as attempts were being made to destroy the case.
It was reported that Singh had taken a year-long ‘study leave’ apparently owing to lack of clarity over his continuance in the agency.
The apex court on May 1 had ordered that Singh be not taken away from the ongoing probe in 2G cases and directed that he will continue with the investigation till completion of trial.
The order was passed after it was alleged that Singh was being transferred to his parent cadre in Uttar Pradesh.