When the court said that "investigation will be in accordance with the rule of law then law also includes Section 6A (of Delhi Special Police Establishment Act)", Attorney General G.E. Vahanvati told the apex court bench of Justice R.M. Lodha, Justice Madan B. Lokur and Justice Kurian Joseph.
The bone of contention in the hearing, that was spread over two days, was Section 6A of Delhi Special Police Establishment Act which says that Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) will have to seek sanction from the competent authority before proceeding against senior bureaucrats.
The hearing related to the question whether in court monitored or court directed cases the CBI would require sanction from the government or not.
The court said it was in a "very rare case that court takes upon the task of monitoring investigation to restore the confidence of people in the rule of law and fair and free investigation".
Justice Lodha in a poser asked: "Is it not in the interest of the centre that in cases of public importance, the confidence of the people is restored in the credibility of the investigation and the rule of law?"
Vahanvati responded by saying: "Don't move on the presumption that Section 6A is bad or useless, the central government is not going to say no (to request for sanction by the CBI) but for the good reasons and court can look into it."
As Vahanvati told the court that the stage of sanction came when in the course of the preliminary enquiry the material available with the investigating agency pointed to a particular senior officer, Justice Lodha asked then why should there be a need for sanction.
"Because the law says so (take sanction)," said Vahanvati.
Justice Lodha said: "The law does not envisage court monitored investigation."
Justice Lokur asked Vahanvati: "Would it not create a situation of conflict when the government said no to a request for sanction to proceed against a senior bureaucrat and the court said yes?"
After the daylong hearing, the court permitted two weeks' time to the government to pass appropriate administrative orders on the CBI submission on improving efficiency of the investigating agency.
--IANS (Posted on 10-09-2013)