SC stays HC order for CBI probe against Uttarakhand CM

SC stays Uttarakhand High Court order for CBI probe against CM Trivendra Singh Rawat on corruption allegations

K K Venugopal, appearing for Rawat, said that an FIR cannot be lodged without hearing the party who is the Chief Minister

Credit: PTI/file photo.

The Supreme Court on Thursday stayed the Uttarakhand High Court's order directing the CBI to lodge an FIR against Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat in connection with a corruption case.

A bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, R Subhash Reddy and M R Shah noted the high court had passed the "drastic" order which had taken "everybody by surprise" as there was no prayer for it in the PIL filed by journalist Umesh Kumar Sharma and others.

The court issued notice to Sharma and others on whose petition the high court had passed its order on Tuesday.

Attorney General K K Venugopal, appearing for Rawat, contended that this was something that the high court should not have done at all as it had an effect and had consequences of destabilising the government.

He said the order was passed without hearing the other side and hampering the reputation of an accused. 

The apex court stayed the operation of the order and sought a response from the petitioners in the high court within four weeks.

"This matter required detailed consideration, you need to file a reply," the court told senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Sharma, who did not oppose a plea for stay on the order.

Sharma, who owned a news channel called 'Samachar Plus', alleged transfer of money into the bank account of Rawat's relatives for an appointment at Gau Sewa Ayog when he was in-charge of Jharkhand BJP.