The CBI acted under “political pressure” last month in “indiscriminately” seizing documents from the office of the principal secretary to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, the city government told the Delhi High Court on Friday (22 January 2016).
The Delhi government filed an affidavit after the high court on Thursday asked it to respond to the CBI’s plea challenging a trial court order directing the probe agency to release documents seized during a raid on December 15 on the office of Rajendra Kumar, the principal secretary to the chief minister.
The trial court’s order came on Wednesday.
In its response, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government sought dismissal of CBI’s plea, saying: “CBI has filed the frivolous, baseless, vexatious and merit less petition with obtuse motives and the same is liable to be dismissed with heavy cost.”
The raid at Delhi Secretariat was “not only devoid of merit but also smacked of vindictiveness and arbitrariness,” the government said, adding that the probe agency raided the office of Rajendra Kumar in “unprecedented haste”.
“In the instant case, CBI proceeded and acted with unprecedented haste for the obvious obtuse reason under undue political pressure in as much as CBI failed to requisition the relevant files to verify the allegation, at first instance from Chief Vigilance Officer (CVO) of the concerned department which were under scanner in FIR/RC (regular case),” said the affidavit filed through advocates Rahul Mehra and Richa Kapoor.
“If CBI was to follow the rules, law and laid down statutory procedures and guidelines, then there was absolutely no need to raid at the said premises and much less seize indiscriminately the documents unrelated to the case.”
The CBI had moved the high court, saying the special court failed to appreciate that the Delhi government has already obtained attested photocopies of the documents seized and thus the order of returning the documents is “wholly misconceived”.
CBI officials raided the Delhi Secretariat on December 15, 2015, alleging they were investigating corruption charges against Rajendra Kumar.
Kejriwal claimed his office was raided too, and linked it to a probe he had ordered against union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on issues related to alleged corruption in Delhi’s cricket association.
The CBI denied searching Kejriwal’s office.