Former Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal was on Tuesday given fresh summons by a special court which asked him to appear before it on September 22 to depose as a prosecution witness in the Rs 10 crore cash-for-post railway bribery case after he did not turn up citing medical grounds.
The court, while allowing him exemption from personal appearance today, made it clear that this would not be allowed on the next date of hearing.
Bansal, who was summoned for today as a prosecution witness in the case in which his nephew Vijay Singla, suspended Railway Board member Mahesh Kumar and eight others are facing trial, did not appear before the court and his counsel filed a plea saying that the Congress leader was unwell as he was suffering from viral fever.
“Let summons be issued to the witness (Bansal) for September 22. Counsel will ensure that witness is present on the next date of hearing. No application for exemption from personal appearance will be allowed on the next date of hearing,” Special CBI Judge Swarana Kanta Sharma said.
During the hearing on Bansal’s plea, his advocate Puneet Ahluwalia told the court that his client was suffering from viral fever and he will appear before the court on any date after September 19.
Bansal, who resigned in May last year as Railway Minister after the matter came to light, was named as a prosecution witness in the case.
The court had commenced the trial in the case yesterday in which CBI had chargesheeted 10 accused last year.
The court had on March 11 this year framed charges against all the accused under section 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC read with provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act.
The court had framed charges against Singla, then Member (Staff) of Railway Board Mahesh Kumar, Managing Director of Bangalore-based G G Tronics India Pvt Limited N R Manjunath, alleged middlemen Ajay Garg and Sandeep Goyal and co-accused Rahul Yadav, Sameer Sandhir, Sushil Daga, C V Venugopal and M V Murali Krishan.
CBI had alleged that Singla had demanded Rs 10 crore from Kumar for his appointment as Member (Electrical) and it was decided between the accused that Rs 5 crore will be paid before the appointment and the rest after the job was done.
It had claimed first tranche of around Rs 90 lakh was given to Singla who was apprehended while accepting the money.