Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Tag: CBI

Return of Bofors

Bofors returned to news on 25/4/2012. TV channels reported former Swedish police chief Sten Lindstrom’s interview to Chitra Subramaniam on thehoot.org.

In April 1987 Swedish Radio reported that kickbacks were paid in Bofors deal. After that some newspapers had reported on it. Chitra Subramaniam worked for Indian Express. Sten Lindstrom had leaked many documents to her. Sten Lindstrom revealed himself as the source.

Why did Sten Lindstrom go public now? Perhaps he thinks he will not live long. He reminds me of W. Mark Felt who was informant in Watergate scandal.

Sten Lindstrom said there was no evidence that Rajiv Gandhi received any bribe but he watched the massive cover-up in India and Sweden and did nothing. The evidence against Ottavio Quattrocchi was conclusive. Martin Ardbo, Managing Director of Bofors, had written in his notes that at no cost could the identity of Q be revealed because his closeness to R.

I remember reading something different many years back. H said he did not care if Q is hurt. H did not care even if N is hurt. But G must be protected at all costs. Q is Ottavio Quattrocchi. H is Hinduja, one of Hinduja brothers. N is Arun Nehru. R or G is Rajiv Gandhi.

The reports do not mention Win Chadda and Hindujas who received kickbacks. Why Sten Lindstrom did not mention them?

Sten Lindstrom said in early 1990 an investigating team met him and gave him a list of name including that of Amitabh Bachchan. The team did not trust Chitra Subramaniam because she refused to link the Bachchans to Bofors kickbacks. The Indian investigators planted story of Bachchan angle in Dagens Nyhetter. The Bachchans took Dagens Nyhetter to court in UK and won.

In early 1990 Vishwanath Pratap Singh was Prime Minister. Arun Nehru was a minister then. He told no one planted Amitabh Bachchan’s name.

Sten Lindstrom said after the Letter Rogatory was lodged with Switzerland he and public prosecutor Hans Ekblom waited for Indians to contact them but no one did. He saw the extent to which everyone was compromised.

V. P. Singh’s government fell in November 1990. Chandra Shekhar who followed him had Rajiv Gandhi’s support and did not last long. P. V. Narasimha Rao was a Congress member. During his time Madhavsinh Solanki lost his job because he gave a letter given by a lawyer to Swiss court hearing Bofors case. Deve Gowda and Inder Kumar Gujral headed United Front government supported by Congress. Atal Behari Vajpayee headed NDA government and BJP was the main constituent. CBI filed chargesheet in Bofors case. Ottavio Quattrocchi was out of India. Attempt of extradite him failed. Hindujas went to Delhi High Court and got a favourable judgment. Win Chadda remained safe. In 2004 UPA came to power. Bofors case was closed.

The interview conceals more than it reveals. We do not know why Ottavio Quattrocchi is target and Hindujas and Win Chadda are not targets.

Hemraj murder case

Hemraj and Aarushi were murdered. People refer to the case as Aarushi murder case. Hemraj is forgotten.

The case has seen many twists. After Aarushi was found murdered it was said that Hemraj was missing. He was the suspect. Next day his body was found on the terrace.

Rajesh Talwar was the suspect. A police officer called a press conference and said Rajesh Talwar had found Aarushi and Hemraj in an objectionable position, not a compromising position.

Supporters of Rajesh Talwar cried foul. There was a demand to hand over the case to CBI and it happened. The CBI officer let off Rajesh Talwar. Three servants were arrested. Narco tests were done. Attempts were made to put words in their mouths and frame them. There was no evidence against the three.

Years passed. Another officer came. He came to the conclusion that Rajesh Talwar and Nupur Talwar were murderers but that could not be proved. He filed closure report.

There were four people in the house. Two were murdered. Nobody came from outside. The two who remained were guilty. Rajesh Talwar and Nupur Talwar committed murders or one of them committed murders and another abetted in cover-up. As said by fictional detective Sherlock Holmes, “When you have excluded the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”

The Talwars were happy that CBI had filed closure report. They pretended they were outraged. They did not know they were suspects.

The court refused to accept closure report and told CBI to pursue the case. The Talwars went on appeals repeatedly and delayed the process. They could hire expensive lawyers. They had friends who appeared on TV channels and defended them.

Nupur Talwar skipped court appearance on 11/4/2012. The special CBI court at Ghaziabad issued a non-bailable warrant against her. CBI went to arrest her. She could not be found at her residence. CBI sent people to different places to find her.

Nupur Talwar appealed in Supreme Court on 12/4/2012 through her lawyer. She did not get bail. She was asked to appear in court. CBI was not prevented from arresting her. She appeared in Supreme Court the next day. The bench comprising Justices B. S. Chauhan and J. S. Shekhar rejected her bail.

What followed was mind boggling. Within minutes of rejection another bench comprising A. K. Patnaik and another judge took up the case of Nupur Talwar. They restrained CBI from arresting Nupur Talwar. They said we have to protect Nupur Talwar. They said the case will go before a bench headed by CJI S. H. Kapadia. CBI said they knew the whereabouts of Nupur Talwar but they had not arrested her.

A. K. Patnaik is a disgrace and a shame. He had no business to take up Nupur Talwar’s petition. Judges like him pervert the system. There will be anarchy. CJI should stop him from functioning. CBI could have gone back to B. S. Chauhan and J. S. Shekhar and they could have said “Who is A. K. Patnaik? Arrest Nupur Talwar right now right here.”

Parliament should start removal procedure against him. Removal is not enough. Law must be changed to hang A. K. Patnaik. He and his associate are like two evil judges in the Book of Daniel. Those two judges framed an innocent woman and sent her to death and Daniel saved her. Here the Supreme Court judges saved a criminal.

On 18/4/2012 in CBI court CBI sought and got extension of non-bailable warrant up to 30/4/2012 and said they will not arrest Nupur Talwar until CJI transfers the case to a bench. A lawyer told the journalists CBI should assume its responsibility and arrest Nupur Talwar. There is no stay on arrest from CBI court, High Court or Supreme Court. CBI is playing a double game. They say they want to arrest Nupur Talwar but do not arrest her.

Sometime back a High Court judge said CBI should be shut down. If CBI knew the whereabouts of Nupur Talwar they should have arrested her. Their search on 11/4/2012 was a farce.

Removal of bad Supreme Court and High Court judges should be an easy process. CBI officers who frame innocent people should be held accountable.

Some chief ministers talk of NCTC being in violation of constitution and federal structure. When Supreme Court or a High Court orders a case to be investigated by CBI it is a violation of constitution and federal structure.

Shame on lawyers who represent and people who defend the Talwars.

Kanimozhi bail plea

There were reports that CBI will not oppose Kanimozhi ‘s bail plea. The Supreme Court questioned CBI on the reports and CBI’s lawyer Harin Raval said it would certainly oppose Kanimozhi ‘s bail plea.

Karunanidhi came to Delhi and met Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh on 22/10/2011. On 24/10/2011 CBI did not oppose bail for Kanimozhi, Asif Balwa, Rajiv Aggarwal, Karim Morani and Sharad Kumar. It opposed bail for R. K. Chandolia and Shahid Balwa. On 31/10/2011 Supreme Court judges G. S. Singhvi and H. L. Dattu questioned Harin Raval “Is is true that during the hearing the CBI counsel said that he has no objection to bail for five out of the 14 accused?” and directed him to confirm the next day. On 1/11/2011 Harin Raval confirmed that U. U. Lalit representing CBI had not opposed bail for five accused.

On 3/11/2011 CBI Special Court rejected Kanimozhi ‘s bail plea and other bail pleas in 2G case . CBI had not opposed her bail plea and many had taken for granted that she would get bail. Judge O. P. Saini rejected her plea. Case-fixing by prosecution and defence did not succeed. DMK MPs were in court. Karim Morani’s family members had brought flowers and chocolates. Kanimozhi had applied for bail under Section 437 of Criminal Procedure Code which allows bail if the applicant is under 16, or a woman, or sick or infirm. The court said Kanimozhi belongs to upper echelons of society and a Member of Parliament. By no stretch of imagination she can be said to be suffering from any disadvantage on ground of being a woman alone.

There is much talk about bail not jail being the principle. Most of those who say that are lawyers of the accused. If the court feels witnesses need to be protected and granting bail will obstruct justice it is within its right to refuse bail. During TV discussions anchors should mention which lawyer represents whom. It should not be made out as if the panelists are not connected to the case. Comments like denial of bail is a grave miscarriage of justice and a deliberate misapplication of law or when the prosecutor does not oppose bail there is no reason to oppose bail are contempt of court. If the judiciary has shifted from the rule “bail is the rule and jail an exception” to “jail is the rule and bail an exception” it has good reasons. Prosecution’s objection is of no consequence. It was interesting to watch Rajiv Pratap Rudy on Left, Right and Centre. He criticized Congress. When Nidhi Razdan said Jaswant Singh of BJP wanted bail for the accused he replied “Nidhi, did I say Kanimozhi should not get bail. I did not.” That stumped Nidhi Razdan.

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