Rail scam: CBI inspector claims boss leaked raid details to Singla

In a shocking allegation, a Chandigarh-based Central Bureau of Investigation inspector has accused his senior officer of trying to influence the investigation in two cases involving former railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal's relatives and aides in connection with the railway bribery scam.

Inspector Balbir Singh submitted an affidavit before the Central Administrative Tribunal on 15 May, in which he says that Chandigarh CBI Deputy inspector General Mahesh Aggarwal, who has close family links to Bansal, leaked crucial information on a Delhi CBI raid at Bansal's nephew Vijay Singla's house on 3 May.

Singh alleged that not only had Aggarwal tipped off Singla's family about the CBI raid  in connection with an alleged Rs10 crore bribe paid to Singla by a Railway Board official for a more lucrative posting, but the action was also deliberately delayed, giving them time to destroy evidence.

In the affidavit, Singh also claimed that Aggarwal had tried to manipulate a probe against Chandigarh Municipal Corporation joint commissioner Rajiv Gupta – brother of Bansal's close aide and auditor Sunil Gupta - in a corruption case.

Gupta is also a shareholding director in Canara Bank, which provided loans to Theon Pharmaceuticals, a firm owned by Bansal's wife and sons.

Balbir Singh claims he had refused to submit to pressure from Aggarwal. He was later transferred to Bhopal. Following his challenge, the CAT has stayed the transfer.

Aggarwal is a 1994-batch Tamil Nadu cadre Indian Police Service officer and a relative of Bansal. He came to Chandigarh as a Superintendent of Police in 2006 and was later promoted to DIG.

In the Rajiv Gupta case as well, Singh claimed, Aggarwal let out information about a trap laid for the municipal corporation joint commissioner. In this case, the CBI had arrested a patwari, Balraj Singh, as he accepted a bribe of Rs2 lakh for issuing a no-objection certificate for building a house.

The affidavit said the money was meant for Rajiv Gupta but Aggarwal stopped his junior officer from naming Rajiv. Balbir also stated that Aggarwal called him on his cell phone even when the trap was being laid, asking him to spare Rajiv.

In a press release on Saturday, the CBI said it has not ordered any internal inquiry against any of its officers in connection with the alleged 'leakage' of information on searches conducted in Chandigarh in the railways bribery case.