New Delhi, Jan 14 IANS | 11 months ago

The Congress Tuesday raised questions over the continuance of Somnath Bharti as Delhi's law minister after he termed as "erroneous" a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) judge accusing him of tampering with evidence in a case he was handling last year.

"People in this country respect the judiciary the most. Our judiciary is independent and nothing can be more serious than raising questions on it," said Congress Delhi chief Arvinder Singh Lovely.

"Whether a department like law should be headed by a person who is himself accused of breaking the law is a matter of concern," he added.

The former Delhi minister said had any minister in the previous Congress-ruled government been accused in this manner, he or she would have resigned.

Talking to reporters, he said party does not believe in launching personal attack but this issue is about the judicial process.

"AAP has claimed our support on the point that they want to appoint more judicial officers. But what's the point in appointing more officers if they don't have any regard for them," he said.

According to media report, an order was passed by the then CBI Special Judge Poonam A. Bamba when she pulled up Bharti and his client Pawan Kumar - facing prosecution on corruption charges - after the CBI accused them of influencing a prosecution witness by speaking to him on phone and discussing the case.

Bharti said it was "erroneous on the part of the judge to call it tampering of evidence" and that he was instead "strengthening evidence" for the case.

Earlier, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal defended the minister, saying no tampering of the evidence was done.

(Posted on 14-01-2014)

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