HC Asks CBI To Respond to Former HC Judge Quddusi’s Plea for Joint Trial in Two Cases

The Delhi High Court Tuesday sought the response of the CBI to former Orissa High Court judge I M Quddusi’s plea seeking joint trial in two cases lodged against him.

Justice Dinesh Kumar Sharma issued notice on the petition and also asked the counsel for the CBI to take instructions on whether the two cases can be tried together.

The high court listed the matter for further hearing on March 3.

Quddusi sought a joint trial against him in trap and graft cases lodged by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

He has challenged a lower court’s January 23 order by which his plea for a “joint and single trial” was dismissed.

Advocate Ayush Jindal, representing Quddusi, submitted since most of the accused, witnesses and documents in the two cases are common in nature, it would be in the interest of justice if they are tried together.

“The allegations of commission of the offences in both the charge sheets are alleged to be originating from the same transaction as the period of commission of offences in both the cases is 2017-18, the complaint was lodged by CBI on the intercepted call records of the accused persons,” the plea, also filed through advocates Hardik Sharma and Ashutosh Singh, said.

The petition added it is alleged in both the cases that the accused persons conspired to secure orders from the Allahabad High Court and the Supreme Court in favour of Prasad Education Trust.

During the hearing, the judge said there is a difference between joint trial and trying both the cases together.

To this, the counsel said they were agreeable if both the cases are tried together.

In its trap case before the trial court, the CBI has accused the former judge and six other persons of criminal conspiracy and corruption.

The CBI has claimed Quddusi tried to influence the verdict in a case heard by the Supreme Court by manipulating several “high-level functionaries”.

It alleged that B P Yadav, a co-accused, had approached the Supreme Court and the Allahabad High Court after his college Prasad Institute of Medical Sciences was barred by the government from admitting students for 2017-18 and 2018-19.

The case was being heard in the Supreme Court when Yadav allegedly approached Quddusi and another co-accused to “get the matter settled” by manipulating “high-level functionaries”, the CBI alleged.

Quddusi was summoned in the trap case as an accused by a CBI court here in November 2019 after the charge sheet was filed by the probe agency.

In the corruption case, the CBI has alleged that the accused entered into a criminal conspiracy and obtained illegal gratification to obtain pecuniary advantage for B P Yadav and Palash Yadav of the Trust.

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