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The New Instalment Of The Bofor's Soap Opera!

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The New Instalment Of The Bofor's Soap Opera!
#11
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Lies, lies and criminal conspiracy
Navin Upadhyay/ New Delhi
The Pioneer
January 19, 2006

Quattrocchi saga ---- With the disclosure by British Crown Prosecution Service
(CPS) that <b>it had received specific request from the Government of India</b> to
defreeze Ottavio Quattrocchi's two London bank accounts, the latest Bofors
controversy is becoming a tale of lies, lies and more lies.

A week after the story first created a political turmoil, the contours of the
conspiracy are<b> becoming clear and the Government squarely stands in the dock.</b>

What could be damning for the UPA Government is the disclosure that CPS could
have kept the tap on the two accounts indefinitely and that it had mounted no
pessure to defreeze them.

Experts feel that the suo motu initiative by the Law Ministry and subsequent
attempt at its concealment may qualify in the category of a criminal act.

"There was a clear intention to defreeze Quattrocchi's accounts. It looks like
some people in the Government connived in conferring a benefit to Quattrocchi,"
said former additional solicitor general KN Bhatt.

Former CBI director Joginder Singh was also baffled by the Indian authorities'
requests to defreeze Quattrocchi's accounts. "It looks a little strange. The
proper course could have been to go to the court, which had issued the Letters
Rogatory (LR) to freeze the accounts, and take an appropriate order from it.
The court's directive should have been have been conveyed to the CPS," he
said.

Mr Singh feels that as the case unfolds, the UPA Government may find itself in a
tight spot. "The Government and CBI will have to do some hard explaining to the
court to prove that everything was done in a bonafide manner," he said.

The latest disclosure by the CPS has shows that Mr Q's two London accounts could
have remained frozen indefinitely because there was no legally stipulated period
for such action.<b> Under the circumstances, it is anyone's guess why the Indian
authorities were hyper active in trying to reactivate the accounts.</b>

The travesty of truth started with Law Minister HR Bhardwaj saying that the
Crown Prosecution and the British Government had over the past two years Sought
evidence against Quattrocchi for keeping his accounts under freeze, and that "We
have conveyed to them the recent rulings of the Delhi High Court rejecting the
case against the Hinduja brothers, as well as the status of investigation."

The CPS e-mail of December 23 clearly shows that the Indian authorities through
the Law Ministry had made a specific request to defreeze Mr Q's accounts,
something which neither the CBI nor Mr Bhardwaj have admitted so far.

<b>Then came CBI's lie. The agency first claimed the Law Ministry had sent
Additional Solicitor General B Dutta to London to convey the status of the
cases against Quattrocchi. The same agency, then in a volte face, claimed that
the Law Ministry had no role in sending Mr Dutta to London.</b>

Then came the claim by Prime minister Manmohan Singh that his Government had no
role in defreezing Mr Q's accounts and the case was handled by the CBI on its
own. But the CPS e-mail to CBI and B Dutta on December 25 put a question mark
on the credibility of the Prime Minister's assertion. The e-mail stated that Mr
Dutta conveyed the instruction on behalf of the Government of India, the
Ministry of Law, and the CBI to defreeze Mr Q's accounts because it was
unlikely that his trial will proceed.

This was followed by a series of off-the-record and on-the-record briefing by
the CBI in which the agency claimed it had made no request to defreeze Mr Q's
accounts, and the CPS might have done it on being told that there was no
evidence to link the kickbacks money with the bank deposits. The CPS revelation
shows that the CBI was blatantly lying.

<b>There are enough indications that the CBI, the Law Minister and the Prime
Minister have tried to hide the facts.</b> This is going to deliver a major blow to
the UPA Government's commitment to fight corruption and provide a clean
government. At the same time, the fact the trial court which had issued the LR
was kept in the dark about defreezing the accounts could also land the
Government in major legal problems.

Experts feel that several people in the Government and CBI could be prosecuted
under various provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act (1988) and the
Indian Penal Code.

The officials and members of the Government who connived with Quattrocchi could
be prosecuted under the following:
<b>
Section 13 under Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 (13-D) dealing with criminal
misconduct by a public servant.

Section 120 A of the Indian Penal Code when two or more persons agree to do, or
cause to be done an illegal act, or an act which is not illegal by illegal
means, such an agreement is designated a criminal conspiracy.

Section 107 of Indian Penal Code deals with abetment when a person who by wilful
misrepresentation, or by wilful concealment of a material fact which he is bound
to disclose, voluntarily causes or procures, or attempts to cause or procure, a
thing to be done, is said to instigate the doing of that thing.
<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd--></b>
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