SC tells CBI to carry on assets probe against Mulayam, sons

Akhilesh Yadav

In a major setback for SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, the Supreme Court on Thursday refused to stop the CBI inquiry against them in a disproportionate assets case, and held that the CBI was free to proceed in accordance with the law.

While holding that the CBI probe against Mulayam, Akhilesh and his other son Prateek Yadav will continue, the bench comprising Chief Justice of India Altamas Kabir and Justice H L Dattu, however, provided relief to Akhilesh's wife, Dimple, against whom the CBI probe will now be dropped. The bench noted that Dimple was not holding any public office then.

Disposing of the review petitions filed by Mulayam and his sons, the bench also modified its March 1, 2007 order and asked the CBI to file its status report before the apex court and not to the government. The bench said "since CBI is an independent body", there is no obligation for it to file the report before the government. "CBI... has to decide what steps it has to take," it said.

The court had ordered a CBI inquiry on March 1, 2007 into the alleged accumulation of disproportionate assets by Mulayam's family, on a PIL filed by an advocate, Vishwanath Chaturvedi.

Seeking review of the order, Mulayam and his family members had submitted that there was no evidence against them and that they were being harassed by political adversaries. The bench today cited a five-judge constitution bench order to uphold the constitutional validity of courts' powers to order a CBI probe, even without the consent of state governments.

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