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Graft allegations against Bhujbal; SC rejects plea against HC order

BhujwalThe Supreme Court on Monday refused to entertain a plea filed against a Bombay High Court decision ordering a SIT probe into graft allegations against former Maharashtra PWD minister Chhagan Bhujbal and others in connection with contracts awarded to some private firms.

“No. We will not entertain it,” a bench comprising Chief Justice HL Dattu and Justice AK Sikri said.

The bench was hearing an appeal filed by Iram T Shaikh against the December 18 order of the High Court on a PIL filed by Aam Aadmi Party there.

Senior advocate Abhishek M Singhvi, appearing for Shaikh, said that the high court entertained a PIL filed by a party (AAP) which wanted to gain political mileage out of judicial proceedings.

The high court had ordered a probe by a special investigation team (SIT) into the allegations of money laundering against NCP leader and former minister Bhujbal, his son Pankaj and nephew Sameer in connection with certain contracts awarded to private firms.

It had said that the SIT will conduct an “open inquiry” into the allegations and the probe should be over by February 28.

The high court had also said that if the probe is not completed by February 28 then an interim report be filed before it.

SIT will comprise officers of Enforcement Directorate and the state anti-corruption bureau, it had said.

AAP, in its petition, had alleged that as PWD minister in the previous Congress-NCP government, Bhujbal had awarded contracts to certain private firms and in return, kickbacks were paid to his institute, Mumbai Education Trust.

Recently, Maharashtra Government had given a nod to an ACB probe into allegations against the NCP leader with regard to construction of New Maharashtra Sadan in Delhi.

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