Delhi HC defers CBI's plea seeking 6 months extension to probe Asthana

While adjourning the matter for April 4, Justice Gupta said that the respondents may file a reply against the application moved by CBI.

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Thursday deferred hearing in the plea filed by Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) seeking more time to complete the probe in the FIR related to the investigative agency's former Special Director Rakesh Asthana and Deputy SP Devendra Kumar, for April 4.

The agency has sought six months more to conclude the probe.

Justice Mukta Gupta, while adjourning the matter for hearing on April 4, said that the respondents may file a reply against the application moved by the CBI.

On Wednesday, Justice Gupta had adjourned the matter as the probe agency had failed to serve a notice to the defence counsels.

During Wednesday's hearing, the probe agency also submitted a status report of the investigation carried out by it in a sealed cover. Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Vikram Banerjee was representing the CBI.

On January 11, the court had dismissed pleas filed by Asthana and Kumar seeking quashing of an FIR against them in the bribery case.

Asthana, the then number two in CBI, had also sought liberty to appeal against the high court order before the Supreme Court, which was granted.

The high court had directed the agency to conclude its investigation against Asthana and Kumar, among others, within 10 weeks.

The FIR was registered against Asthana and others after a preliminary inquiry by CBI.

The investigating agency filed an FIR against Asthana for allegedly accepting a bribe from a businessman who was connected to a case against controversial meat exporter Moin Akhtar Qureshi.

Asthana was heading the Special Investigation Team (SIT) that was probing the Qureshi case.

The case against Asthana, Kumar, and others was registered based on a complaint received from Hyderabad-based businessman Sathish Babu Sana on October 15 last year.

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