HC dismisses CBI’s appeal seeking hearing on plea to quash FIR in LIFE Mission scam

Kochi: The Kerala High Court on Tuesday dismissed a petition filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) seeking an early hearing on the petition filed by the Kerala government to quash the FIR in LIFE Mission scam case.

During the hearing, a bench of Justice PV Kunhikrishnan asked the CBI about the counter-affidavit, to which the CBI’s counsel responded saying that since it was an inter-departmental issue, a counter affidavit has not been prepared and it would take some more time.

The bench then asked why such undue haste was shown in asking the court to consider the revision plea.

The Kerala government, on the other hand, submitted before the court that the CBI is only interested in grabbing media attention and cheap publicity.

“CBI has faced the present setback due to not preparing the counter-affidavit which is a technical formality. CBI can file a revised plea along with the counter-affidavit,” it said.

The Kerala High Court had last week stayed for two months all proceedings against the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the LIFE Mission on the FIR registered by the CBI in connection with a housing project scam. However, no stay has been issued in the probe against MD, Unitac, who is the first accused in the matter.

The CBI had later approached the High Court seeking to vacate the interim order staying the ongoing probe into the alleged LIFE Mission scam.
The order had come on a petition filed by the CEO of the Life Mission, Kerala government, seeking directions to quash the FIR registered by the CBI.

The case pertains to spending foreign funds against the purpose for which it was aimed. Congress MLA Anil Akkara had filed a complaint with CBI alleging that various middlemen including state representatives and government officials received Rs 4.5 crore as commission.

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