Railway bribery case: Order reserved on Singla’s bail plea

    By IANS,

    New Delhi : The Delhi High Court Wednesday reserved its verdict on bail pleas of former railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal’s nephew Vijay Singla and suspended Railway Board member Mahesh Kumar, who stand accused in the Rs.10 crore cash-for-post railway bribery case.

    Justice Hima Kohli reserved the order after counsel for the accused and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) concluded their arguments.

    Singla, Mahesh Kumar and two others, including businessman Narayan Rao Manjunath and alleged middleman Sandeep Goyal, moved the court seeking bail.

    The trial court July 12 denied bail to the four accused.

    The CBI arrested the four for their alleged roles in the bribe case, in which a deal of Rs.10 crore was allegedly finalised for arranging one of the top positions in the Railway Board for Mahesh Kumar, then the member (staff) in the board.

    Opposing the bail plea of Singla, the CBI said he was the “main person” whose influence was to be used for the appointment of Mahesh Kumar.

    Singla and other accused were the “main conspirators” and the offence committed by them was of a grave nature, the probe agency said.

    Public Prosecutor Rajdeepa Behura said Singla’s uncle was a former railway minister and he was an influential person who could destroy evidence.

    Singla and Mahesh Kumar could tamper with evidence or influence witnesses if released on bail, he said.

    All the accused have been formally charged with the offence of criminal conspiracy under the Indian Penal Code and provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

    The probe agency filed a list of 90 prosecution witnesses along with the charge sheet and named Bansal, who was forced to resign as the railway minister as the alleged scam unfolded, as the witness in the case.

    Manjunath and Goyal had helped Mahesh Kumar in arranging money to give bribe to Singla and were to get favours from Mahesh Kumar after his appointment as Railway Board member (electrical), the CBI said in its charge sheet.

    Singla allegedly demanded Rs.10 crore and accepted a bribe of Rs.90 lakh from Mahesh Kumar in his office May 3, the CBI said.