The year 2011 was marked by complex, specialized, high profile investigations conducted by the Central Bureau of Investigation, to probe corruption and crime. The Bureau’s investigations made national headlines in several cases, such as, the 2G Spectrum investigation; Bellary illegal mining Case, Bhanwari Devi abduction and murder case, Commonwealth Games related investigations, alleged irregularities in the implementation of National Rural Health Mission in Uttar Pradesh and alleged corruption in Mumbai’s Adarsh Housing Society case, among several others.
2. The CBI registered 1003 cases; disposed off 993 cases from investigation, and concluded trial in 895 cases with a conviction rate of 67.12 percent.
3. The Hon’ble Prime Minister inaugurated CBI’s new Headquarters Building in New Delhi in the month of April and exhorted the Bureau to bring the corrupt to book, no matter how mighty they may be. The new imposing CBI Headquarters gave the staff space that promotes functional efficiency, team work and offered several modern equipment and features.
4. Lord Ian Blair, UK’s former Commissioner of London’s Metropolitan Police, delivered the annual D.P. Kohli Memorial Lecture on “Counter Terrorism and Police Legitimacy in June Lord Blair talked of many contemporary issues and challenges that police forces over the world face.
5. The CBI hosted a Biennial Conference of Heads of State Anti Corruption/Vigilance Bureaux in the month of October. Hon’ble Prime Minister while addressing the Conference said the Government was committed to strengthening CBI and bringing about necessary reform. MoS (PP) Sh. Narayansamy said that the government is always ready to provide support and resources to the CBI in order to make the fight against corruption effective and decisive.
6. CBI began an Anti Corruption Awareness Programme for school children and young people at ts Headquarters and in Zonal offices across the country. The programme aims at making children aware of the activities of CBI and educating them on the legal and systemic provisions available to tackle corruption.
7. Even though High-profile corruption cases kept CBI in headlines, the Bureau focused on several sectors having impact on the common public, such as, Education; Health; Banking; Coal; Mining; Telecom; Petroleum etc. This paved the way for systemic improvement in these sectors and laying down of rules to prevent corruption.
8. Some key cases in which investigation was completed in 2011 are highlighted :
- CBI filed three chargesheets in connection with issuance of UAS Licences and 2G Spectrum this year. This extremely complex specialized investigation having various dimensions was completed in record time. To put forth comprehensive and exhaustive chargesheets before the Courts, the investigators of the CBI took inputs from experts in various fields to analyze the files, documents and ledgers. Besides filing three chargesheets, CBI expanded scope of its probe to all the telecom licenses awarded during 2001-07 and registered two fresh cases in this connection.
- CBI filed a chargesheet in Illegal Mining Case by a Bellary based Mining firm. The detailed and complicated investigation followed up on several leads and complaints, and also relied on scientific techniques, like Satellite Images and latest advanced survey methods to establish the aspect of illegal mining. Forensic accounting techniques were utilized to analyze computer hard discs, lap tops, mobile phones and made use of data retrieval techniques. Investigation is still on.
- CBI filed a chargesheet against the then Chief Post Master General of Maharashtra & Goa, an Additional Secretary rank officer and two private persons for demanding & accepting a bribe of Rs.2 crore for issuing ‘No Objection Certificate’ for development of plot reserved for postal department at Meera Road.
- As the meticulous investigation in the sensational Bhanwari Devi murder case nears conclusion, the Bureau has been able to successfully unravel the conspiracy behind the murder of this nurse in Rajasthan’s Jodhpur district. CBI filed the first chargesheet against three accused persons wherein it was alleged that three accused persons along with others conspired to abduct Smt. Bhanwari Devi in order to eliminate her. Several suspects who were absconding were either arrested or forced to surrender. The case received vide coverage across the country as the CBI interrogated suspects, witnesses and gathered evidence . With active assistance from Rajasthan Police, the investigation is being viewed as a model of CBI- State police cooperation.
- A Chargesheet was filed against the former President of Medical Council of India and the Vice Chairman of Patiala-based Medical College and Hospital among others in a bribery case of Rs.2 crore. The investigation revealed that the then President of MCI had shown favour to Patiala-based medical college` by wielding his influence over the inspection team of Medical Council of India which was deputed to inspect the said medical college at Patiala.
- A chargesheet against nine accused persons was filed in connection with the acquisition of the Time Scoring Result contract relating to Commonwealth Games-2010. Investigation revealed that the then officials of the Organizing Committee CWG conspired with the private persons and indulged in series of forgeries, manipulations and mechanism with an objective to award TSR contract to a Switzerland-based company at an exorbitant cost.
- A chargesheet was filed against a former High Court Judge and four others in a case related to delivery of Rs.15 lakh cash at the door-step of another High Court Judge of Punjab & Haryana in 2008. The investigation established that the accused High Court Judge obtained valuable items without consideration from private persons.
- CBI filed a chargesheet against 16 accused persons in Dara Singh alleged fake encounter case of Rajasthan. CBI investigation revealed that Dara Singh was allegedly killed in a fake encounter in pursuance of criminal conspiracy. Further investigation is on.
- After completion of investigation, 4 chargesheets were filed in separate cases of bribery for loans against the Secretary and CEO of Life Insurance Corporation, CMD of a Mumbai-based firm, General Manager of Bank of India(Mumbai), DGM of Punjab National Bank(Mumbai) and others.
- A charge sheet was filed in connection with alleged murder of Shri Phool Mohammed Khan, the then SHO, Mantown police station in Sawai Madhopur(Rajasthan). Further investigation is still on.
- Chargesheets were filed in separate cases relating to corruption in North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council (now Dima Hasao).
- CBI filed three chargesheets against the then Vice Chairman and Members, all of Bar Council of India and others in alleged bribery cases for submitting favourable reports in respect of private Law Colleges at Ghaziabad(UP); Rohtak (Haryana) & Bangalore(Karnataka) for granting recognition and showing favours.
9. In carrying out all its duties as an anti corruption Agency, CBI in 2011 nabbed several public servants who were caught red handed accepting bribe. Some cases are highlighted in brief:
- CBI arrested a Supdt. of Central Excise and Customs for accepting a bribe of Rs.1.09 crore. The public servant was demanding bribe from a businessman in the Pune(Maharashtra)
- Chairman & Managing Director of NALCO, Bhubhaneswar was arrested when he got his wife to accept an illegal gratification of three gold bricks weighing 1 kg of 24 carat gold. His wife had accepted this illegal gratification from the wife of a middle man, who was brokering a deal between the CMD and MP-based private group of companies. Searches in this connection led to recovery of Rs.29.5 lakh in cash and gold worth Rs.2.43 crores at current prices.
- Additional Commissioner of Income Tax and a Managing Director of a private Education firm were arrested in Chennai on a bribery charge of Rs 50 lakh and for concealing taxable income worth Rs 116 crore.
- A Commissioner of Income Tax was arrested in Mumbai for demanding and accepting a bribe of Rs two lakh from a private person for issuing a favourable Assessment Order
- A Colonel ( Doctor) of Military Hospital, Ambala was arrested for accepting bribe for declaring candidates medically fit in a recruitment drive
- A Divisional Engineer of the Railways in Maharashtra was arrested for demanding and accepting a bribe of Rs Fifty thousand for getting sanction of bills to the complainant.
10. A glimpse of the ongoing investigations of the CBI and some new cases which were registered in 2011:
- A case was registered this year relating to Mumbai’s Adarsh Cooperative Housing Society against 13 accused persons belonging to the Army, Defence Estate Office (Govt. of Maharashtra), public servants and unknown persons. Further investigation is in progress.
- CBI registered 2 cases relating to alleged irregularities in use of the funds allotted to the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) in Uttar Pradesh in 2011. On the directions of the Hon’ble Allahabad High Court, the Bureau registered several Preliminary Enquiries on alleged irregularities in implementation of NRHM funds in UP.
- In connection with Commonwealth Games 2010, separate cases were registered for alleged irregularities in contract for overlays at different venues , for irregular award of contract of production and coverage through Prasar Bharati; against certain officials of DDA and CPWD and private firms in connection with irregular contract for laying of synthetic out-door flat lawn ball greens ;relating to irregularities in merchandising and on-line retail of goods; against certain officials of MTNL, unknown officials of private company and others for alleged irregularities in awarding the work of Broadcast Network and against certain officials of NDMC,CPWD and others for irregularities in awarding contracts for infrastructure related projects including various stadia meant for the CWG .
- CBI is currently investigating several complex crime cases. The cases which were registered in 2011 include the Tulsi Prajapati alleged fake encounter case, Ishrat Jahan Fake Encounter Case in Gujarat, the deaths of two former Chief Medical Officers in UP, and the then Dy CMO, Lucknow , the alleged fake encounter of Sadiq Jamal Mehtar in Gujarat , the alleged rape of a minor in Banda (UP). Killing of Ms Shehla Masood in Bhopal; rioting and firing in Gopalgarh (Rajasthan) and incidents of violence in the Dantawada District, Chhatisgarh which occurred in March, 2011. CBI filed a closure report in the case relating to the death of Swamy Nigmanand (Uttarakhand), as no evidence of poisoning was detected.
- CBI busted two rackets relating to manipulations in the AIIMS PG Exams held on 08.05.2011 and in All India Pre-Veterinary Test held 14.05.2011. The main accused and his associates manipulated answer sheets at the time of scanning. The Bureau registered four cases regarding manipulation of AIIMS Entrance Exams.
- A case was registered against a Hyderabad-based private real estate firm and others on allegation of execution of real estate project at Manikonda in Hyderabad in connivance with public servants.
- As per directions of the Hon’ble High Court of Andhra Pradesh, a case was registered against an MP from Andhra Pradesh on the allegation that the investors, who invested in the company owned and promoted by this MP at a very high premium, were as quid pro quo for favours dolled out. Another preliminary enquiry was registered against a former Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh for alleged abuse of official position.
- In Mumbai, CBI arrested two Conmen posing as senior officers of the CBI. Around 25 kg. gold and properties worth crores were recovered.
- A case was registered against certain officials of the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons and other private persons for allegedly giving undue favours to a private firm.
- CBI arrested Dy. General Manager of South East Coal Ltd. in a bribery case. The Bureau registered 3 separate cases against three senior officers of the Northern Coal Fuel Ltd. Including CMD and others for alleged financial irregularities and corruption.
- CBI has also arrested AIG(Vigilance), Punjab Police & Joint Director(Chemistry), Central Insecticide Board & Registration Committee, M/o Agriculture, Faridabad in two separate case of bribery.
- Cases were registered and Searches conducted at the premises of certain public servants including some senior bureaucrats on complaints, allegations and information regarding possession of assets disproportionate to their known sources of income.
- CBI also registered three bribery related cases against Member and Vice Chairman, Bar Council of India and others for expediting process of recognition to the private Law College, each at UP; Rajasthan & Haryana.
- CBI has registered a case against Vice Chancellor, Indian Maritime University, Uthandi, ECR, Chennai for possession of disproportionate assets.
11. During the year, the CBI was able to get several convictions. Some are highlighted below:
- In Dharmapuri (Tamil Nadu), 215 accused persons mainly government officials and employees, including certain top forest officials, were sentenced in a CBI case related to atrocities committed on the tribal people of Vachathi Village. They were handed prison sentences ranging from two years to ten years of Rigorous Imprisonment.
- The Special Judge, CBI, Ranchi convicted 58 persons in one of the fodder scam cases. In another fodder scam case, the Special Judge, CBI Ranchi sentenced 35 persons with Rigorous Imprisonment of six years with a fine varying from Rs.1.5 lakh to 2 crore.
- The Hon’ble Sikkim High Court upheld the conviction of Shri Nar Bahadur Bhandari, the then Chief Minister of Sikkim.
- Eight accused persons were sentenced to undergo Life Imprisonment for murdering Ms.Parilata Ravindra, the then MLA of Andhra Pradesh.
- Special Judge for CBI Cases, Ghaziabad sentenced two accused to life imprisonment in the sensational Dr.Kavita Rani Murder Case.
- The Delhi High Court upheld the conviction of former Telecom Minister Shri Sukh Ram in a CBI case relating to telecom equipment scam. He was convicted in trial court and was awarded 3 years Rigorous Imprisonment.
The Interpol Wing of CBI got arrested Shri Mehfuz Huq, on a US Interpol Red Notice, at IGI Airport, New Delhi for murder committed during 1989. Interpol Wing also got Sri Jeremy Mahen Chanmugen, arrested in Mumbai on Interpol Red Notice of Singapore, for possession of drugs. Aman Vyas, wanted by Interpol in connection with three rape cases and the murder of a teenager in the UK, was arrested from IGI airport, Delhi as he was about to flee to Bangkok. The Interpol Wing of CBI also organized the Interpol Liaison Officers and Police Liaison Officers Conference. The Interpol and CBI have agreed to set up a Research & Innovation Centre for prevention of telecommunication crime in India
A Foundation Stone for construction of the Second Phase of the CBI Academy, Ghaziabad was laid by Director, CBI this year. The 14th Batch of Sub Inspector Cadets passed out from the CBI Academy. This group of 37 Sub Inspectors successfully completed intensive training in basic law and investigation.