New Delhi: The CBI on Sunday came in defence of its Director Alok Verma following allegations of corruption levelled against him by his deputy Rakesh Asthana, booked by the agency on bribery charges last week, saying they are “false and malicious”. Also Read - Former CBI Special Director Rakesh Asthana Appointed Chief of Border Security Force
In his letters to the Cabinet Secretary and Central Vigilance Commission, Asthana had written about 10 cases of alleged corruption and irregularities against the CBI Director Alok Verma, levelling serious corruption charges in some of them. Also Read - CBI vs CBI: 'Clinching Evidence Against Rakesh Asthana in Bribery Case,' Ex-investigating Officer Tells Court
One of the case pertained to Sathish Sana, a businessman facing probe in a corruption case involving meat exporter Moin Qureshi in which Asthana had alleged on August 24 that Sana paid Rs 2 crore to Verma to get relief in the case. Also Read - Delhi HC Grants CBI 2 More Months to Probe Rakesh Asthana in Bribery Case
Asthana had also alleged that Verma delayed his team’s request to arrest Sana in the case.
However, in its FIR against Asthana, registered on the complaint of Sana in which he claimed to have paid Rs 3 crore to the former since last year, the agency accused Asthana of criminal conspiracy and corruption.
The agency FIR is based on allegations levelled by Sana, who was facing CBI charges, before magistrate under section 164 of the CrPC.
The statement attached in the FIR does not make any mention of any direct meeting or call between Asthana and Sana or any direct and confirmed interaction between the two.
“Sana was called to the CBI for examination/inquiry on multiple occasions in October/November, 2017. During October/November, 2017, there were four instances in which notices were given to Sana. In order to get relief from frequent notices, Shri Sana approached one Manoj Prasad in Dubai in the month of December, 2017,” the spokesperson said.
He claimed Rs 2.95 crores was paid to the public servants through Manoj Prasad and Somesh Prasad and Sana was able to obtain relief in the on-going investigation in the Moin Qureshi case.
Subsequently, there were no notices issued to him till mid of February, 2018, the spokesman said.
He said on February 19, 2018, again notice was issued to Sana who flew to Dubai and met Prasad.
“Subsequently, there were no notices issued till end of May/early June, 2018,” he said.
The spokesperson claimed that an LOC was issued to prevent Sana’s escape from the country on May 16 (by the team of Asthana which was probing the matter).
On the basis of LOC, Sana was stopped from going abroad by immigration office at Hyderabad on September 24 on the basis of the Look Out Circular.
“Subsequently, he was called by investigation officer on October 1, 2018 and again on October 3. Faced with continued harassment, Sana got his statement recorded with the Magistrate Court regarding the entire transaction,” he said.
Sana also contacted Prasad to get relief from appearance due on October 9, which was promised by Manoj. He had promised to obtain relief till 25th as requested by Sana, the spokesman said.
“This relief was obtained with the promise of payment of Rs 2 crore, of which, Rs 25 lakh was paid on October 10, 2018,” he said.
Manoj was caught on 16th October when he came to India to get the remaining Rs 1.75 crore, the spokesperson alleged.
“On 20th, Sathish Sana once again recorded his statement with the concerned court corroborating the facts he mentioned in the complaint,” he said.
(With PTI inputs)