Thursday, December 07, 2006

CBI waits for sanction to question Dasmunsi in 2001 ‘forgery’ case

New Delhi: Five years after the CBI registered a case to probe a forged government letter questioning the disinvestment of Air India, the agency is still waiting for the Lok Sabha Speaker’s sanction to question Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi, now Minister for Parliamentary Affairs and Information and Broadcasting.
In August 2001, Dasmunsi, who was then the Congress chief whip in Lok Sabha, had targeted the NDA government by reading extracts from a letter, purportedly written by the Cabinet Secretary to then Principal Secretary Brajesh Mishra on the subject of Air India’s disinvestment. The letter, which Dasmunsi quoted, alleged “it has been felt in certain sections of the government and Parliament that the government is engaged in an exercise to give away a valuable asset rather than extract value from it”.
Arun Shourie, the then Disinvestment Minister, told Parliament that the letter was a forgery. The CBI registered a case and questioned all persons concerned, including officials from the Cabinet Secretariat, but never managed to speak to Dasmunsi.
07/12/06 Ritu Sarin/Indian Express
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