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Ex-MHA official accuses SIT of planting statements

New Delhi, July 15, 2013, DHNS: 1:52 IST
A former undersecretary in Ministry of Home Affairs was said to have had an acrimonious exchange with a SIT official investigating Ishrat Jahan fake encounter case.

In a letter to the Home Ministry, R V S Mani, an IAS officer posted in the internal security division, has accused SIT IG Satish Chandra Verma of planting statements he never made when questioned in connection with the case, and demanded the presence of Chief Vigilance Officer and a lawyer during his future deposition before the SIT.

Verma, however, has been shunted out of the SIT and is currently with the Junagadh Police Training College.

According to the exchanges between the two officers, which was provided in summery by Mani as part of the June 24 letter, Verma reported to have told Mani during the questioning on June 22 in Gandhinagar that Home Ministry officials were "stooge of IB", to which Mani retorted that they were "no fools" to parrot the inputs on terror activities unless it is verified by them.

Mani was called for questioning to clear the air about the two contradictory affidavits filed in a span of a month in 2009 on the Ishrat case.

A top Home Ministry official ducked questions about Mani’s contentions. Congress leader Digvijay Singh had demanded intervention of Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde in the matter. “He asked me whether this affidavit filed on August 6, 2009 was brought as a draft by Rajinder Kumar which was then submitted for approval. I said it is not the case.

He asked me who brought this affidavit. I said the Director being Income Tax officer as well as my being a qualified lawyer do not require any other person to draft it for us," Mani said in the letter. To his detailed reply, Verma told Mani that he was “lying” and accused him and his seniors in the Ministry of interacting with Kumar. “It was none of my business or yours as to whom they used to meet for official work,” Mani said during interrogation.

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