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CBI vs CBI: There was clinching evidence against Asthana: Ex-IO

CBI vs CBI: There was clinching evidence against Asthana: Ex-IO

New Delhi: A Delhi court was informed Friday that there were "clinching evidence" against former CBI special director Rakesh Asthana in a bribery case in which he was recently given a clean chit by the agency.

Special CBI judge Sanjeev Aggarwal was told by Ajay Kumar Bassi, the former investigating officer (IO) in the case, that the current IO, Satish Dagar, was trying to "save" Asthana and other public servants.

Dagar hit back saying it was Bassi who had been removed from the case due to "biased investigation". As Bassi and Dagar got into a verbal spat, the judge, who was scheduled to take cognizance of the charge sheet in the CBI bribery case, adjourned the

matter.

The court asked both the officers to "not wash dirty linen in public" as they "both work in the same organisation".

Bassi had been summoned by the court to answer its query on the initial investigation into the case. The charge sheet, filed on February 11, had only arrayed "middleman" Manoj Prasad as accused. Asthana and CBI's DSP Devender Kumar, who was arrested in 2018 and later got bail, were named in column 12 of the charge sheet in the case since there was not enough evidence to make them accused. During the hearing on Friday, Bassi told the court that Dagar had "deliberately ignored" evidence against Asthana and the suspended DSP, who was the IO in a 2017 case involving meat exporter Moin Qureshi.

"From day one the new IO (Dagar) has been trying to give clean chit to Asthana. There were clinching evidence in the affidavit filed before the Supreme court that has been ignored. He did not even seize Kumar's phone and other electronic evidence," Bassi

said.

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