The Supreme Court on Monday asked Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel and his political advisor and former BBC journalist Vinod Verma, to tell why a sleaze CD case against them not be shifted outside the state.
The top court stayed the trial in the case on a plea by the CBI that witnesses were now being threatened and implicated in false cases.
A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices S A Bobde and S Abdul Nazeer issued a notice to Baghel and his advisor and former journalist Verma, and others on a petition filed by the CBI.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the CBI, submitted that the charge sheet has already been filed in the case.
But Baghel had got elected as Congress MLA and became the Chief Minister, and witnesses were being threatened with the state police were registering FIRs against them.
He said two witnesses who recorded their statements under Section 164 of the Criminal Procedure Code were threatened.
The CBI had registered the case in December 2017 on a complaint alleging Baghel, then Pradesh Congress Committee chief, along with other circulated a fake CD allegedly in order to defame a minister and the then state government.
The CBI sought transfer of the case to Delhi from Raipur.