The Delhi government’s Anti Corruption Branch (ACB) has decided to move the high court against Assembly Speaker Ram Niwas Goel’s order declining prosecution sanction against AAP MLA S K Bagga in a corruption case, official sources said on Tuesday.
According to the sources, Bagga, the MLA from Krishna Nagar in east Delhi, has been accused of seeking bribe from an AAP worker, Raju Sachdeva, on multiple occasions on different pretexts.
But despite having clinching evidence in the form of call recordings where Bagga can be heard demanding a bribe of Rs 5 lakh, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal turned a blind eye to it and refused to take any action after Sachdeva filed a complaint and provided the call recording to him on November 6, 2015, the sources claimed.
”When the ACB, which is investigating the case, approached Goel seeking prosecution sanction against Bagga, after going through the due diligence of investigative procedures, he refused to grant prosecution sanction, in an obvious attempt to save Bagga.
”Goel, in complete and blatant disregard of evidence verified substantively by the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL), sweepingly left Bagga off the hook by resorting to a partisan and questionable personal ‘wisdom’,” one of the official sources said.
In his complaint dated November 9, 2015, Sachdeva had alleged that Bagga took Rs 11,000, Rs 21,000 and Rs 25,000 on different occasions promising to get him an Aam Aami Party (AAP) ticket in the Delhi civic elections of 2017. Thereafter, Bagga demanded Rs 2 lakh and again Rs 1 lakh from Sachdeva, but he refused, the sources claimed.
They further disclosed that in November 2015, Bagga had told Sachdeva to organise a Diwali function at Gandhi Park in New Govindpura and promised that the chief minister would be the chief guest there. The complainant said Bagga demanded Rs 5 lakh for ensuring Kejriwal’s presence at the event, they claimed.
”As Sachdeva did not pay the demanded Rs 5 lakh, Bagga refused to get Kejriwal as the chief guest,” the source claimed.
”However, Sachdeva who had recorded the entire telephonic conversation with Bagga, handed over the same to Kejriwal, but no action was taken by him. Later, Sachdeva gave the audio recording to ACB, which registered an FIR on March 9, 2018, under section 7/13 of the Prevention of Corruption Act and section 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code,” the source added.
Sources further said that during investigation, voice samples of both Bagga and Sachdeva were taken by the ACB and sent to the FSL in Rohini for examination. The FSL report confirmed that the audio recordings were genuine and Bagga’s voice sample matched with the audio recording.
”Accordingly, on March 23, 2022, ACB sought permission of Assembly Speaker for prosecuting Bagga under the Prevention of Corruption Act. However, Goel turned down its request citing that the facts do not disclose any offence under section 7/13 of Prevention of Corruption Act and therefore he declined to sanction the prosecution in this case.” the source said. Lt Governor V K Saxena has now granted his approval to proceed with the filing of appeal in the court against the denial of prosecution sanction in the case, they added.