HC orders CBI probe into Rs 113 cr scam in Abdullah-led JKCA

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir High Court yesterday ordered CBI probe into the alleged Rs 113 crore scam in the state's Cricket Association, in which allegations have been levelled against certain office-bearers including its President and former Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah.

Farooq Abdullah. Pic/PTI
Farooq Abdullah. Pic/PTI 

While giving the order, a Division Bench, comprising Chief Justice N Paul Vasanthakumar and Justice Bansi Lal Bhat, came down heavily on the state police which has been probing the case since 2012, saying a "lack of will to dig out the scamsters" was clear from its performance.

"The Registrar Judicial, High Court of J&K, Srinagar, is directed to send a copy of this judgement to the Director, Central Bureau of Investigation, for taking the investigation in hand and bring the same to a logical conclusion, as expeditiously as possible, preferrably within six months," the Bench said in its 17-page order pronounced on a PIL filed by two cricketers Majid Yaqoob Dar and Nissar Ahmad Khan.

In the PIL, the petitioners have alleged embezzlement of over Rs 113 crore in the cricket association under Abdullah. Justifying its decision to hand over the case to CBI, the court observed that the Crime Branch being a limb of the Home Department of the state government may not be able to stand up to the might, influence and clout enjoyed by the accused.

"The very fact that the President of the JKCA (Farooq Abdullah) is a tall political personality having served as the Chief Minister of the state besides having a tenure as Union Minister in the previous regime, whose complicity is alleged in granting approval to two contradictory resolutions ... render it imperative that the investigation is transferred to Central bureau of Investigation," the court said.

It added that since the "embezzled funds" have allegedly originated from BCCI in Mumbai, the Crime Branch would encounter a lot of hassles in investigations as its jurisdiction is limited to the state. The court also dealt with the issue of the CBI taking over the investigations of the case in the absence of sanction from the state government, citing certain observations by the Supreme Court in 2G spectrum case.

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