HC rejects petition for SIT probe into diary row

The Karnataka High Court on Monday rejected a PIL which sought setting up of a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe allegations and counter allegations by the Congress and BJP on pay-offs made to the parties’ Central leadership.

The petitioner, M Abdul Hameed, a journalist, had approached the court seeking a probe into the alleged diary found in the house of MLC Govindaraj during an I-T raid, which is said to have details of payments made to the Congress high command and to the media.

Rejecting the PIL, a division bench comprising Chief Justice Subhro Kamal Mukherjee and Justice R B Budihal said the entries in the diary are not conclusive proof. “The I-T department is already investigating the case. We are not inclined to entertain the petition,” the bench said.

The petitioner has contended that the BJP revealing the contents of the diary, which is in custody of the I-T and the Enforcement Directorate, only shows that none of the authorities has proceeded to conduct any independent investigation. The petitioner said that members of the ruling party at the Centre seem to have exclusive access to the investigation material.

Hameed, in his petition, said that it was imperative that in an atmosphere vitiated by corruption in the state which is facing elections in about a year, the high court should pass necessary orders constituting an SIT. The SIT should investigate the allegations of corruption, especially in respect of pay-offs by state leaders to their top brass at the Centre across the political spectrum, he said in the petition.

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