Millennium Post

Former CBI director Joginder Singh ‘happy’ with verdict

Former Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) director Joginder Singh, who championed the prosecution of convicted former Bihar chief minister Lalu Prasad Yadav in 1996 is ‘happy’ with Monday’s verdict. 

While speaking to Millennium Post Singh said, ‘This was the case which was registered during my time and chargesheeted during my time. Today’s verdict proves that bog people often get away despite their fault.’ 

Stressing on the rarity of convictions, Singh said, ‘Two former chief ministers (Lalu Prasad Yadav and Jagannath Mishra) has been convicted on the same day and at the same time. This is a rare case in India.’ 

In 1996 when Joginder Singh was CBI director the agency had ordered the prosecution of Lalu Prasad Yadav, former chief minister Jagannath Mishra, union minister of state for rural development Chandradev Prasad Verma and 53 others in Rs 9.5 billion fodder scam.

The decision had then been taken by Joginder Singh himself after reading the reports of the investigating officers and scrutinising the evidence. He also minutely monitored the case during his tenure. 

Reiterating on CBI’s dependence on the government, Singh said, ‘A new law has been passed on 1 May 2013 as per which the CBI will have to take permission of the concerned ministries to question any joint secretary and above level officials, even retired. This is a politician-bureaucrats nexus.’  He added that one can take example of under investigation Coalgate scam, among others, wherein the agency is facing problems in getting permission to question several bureaucrats whose clarifications on certain matters may be imperative.   

Singh said that even now CBI works under too much control of the government. ‘Even to go to a bathroom the CBI has to ask the government,’ Singh mocked.   

When asked whether the present CBI’s performances is justifiable in wake of scores of cases pertaining to bigwigs Singh said, ‘I cannot comment on the present CBI set-up as it would be unethical but I think it is working reasonable good.’  

Fodder scam had first came to light in the report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India in December 1995. It involved charges of fraudulent withdrawal of government funds worth Rs 9.5 billion in the Bihar animal husbandry department against non-existent supplies of fodder and medicines
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