The Supreme Court on Monday deferred hearing a plea made by CBI director Alok Verma against the order to send him on leave, in view of the delay in filing of an inquiry report by the Central Vigilance Commission.
A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul noted that the CVC could not file the report of the inquiry, supervised by former SC judge, Justice A K Patnaik, by 11.30 am Saturday.
"You were late by one hour on Saturday. But on Sunday, the registry was kept open but neither did you come to file the report nor you informed that you are not coming," the bench told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta.
At the outset, Mehta sought apologies for the delay. He handed over three sealed envelopes containing the inquiry report to the bench in the court itself.
Another report containing all the decisions including transfer and posting of CBI officers taken by interim director M N Rao was also furnished to the court.
The bench, after taking those reports on record, put the matter for consideration on Friday.
Senior advocate Dushyant Dave, appearing for NGO 'Common Cause', was quick to point out they opened the lock of the CBI office at 2 am on (Oct 23-24) to take a decision (on sending Alok Verma on leave) but failed to file its report on time.
The NGO had filed a separate petition challenging the decisions taken by the Union government on October 23 to divest CBI chief Verma of his powers.
It had sought a probe against special director Rakesh Asthana in the FIR lodged against by the CBI on October 15 in a bribery case.
Both Verma and Asthana were involved in a bitter feud, prompting the Union government to send them on leave.
Hearing Verma's plea, the top court had earlier allowed the CVC probe ordered against him by the Union government to continue. It had then appointed Justice Patnaik to supervise the probe.