Rediff India Abroad
 Rediff India Abroad Home  |  All the sections


The Web

India Abroad

Sign up today!

Article Tools
Email this article
Top emailed links
Print this article
Contact the editors
Discuss this article

Home > News > PTI

Now, a blot over Tehelka probe

April 29, 2005 19:06 IST

In a new twist to the controversy surrounding the 'clean chit' to former defence minister George Fernandes in the 'Tehelka' scam, a news magazine has claimed that Justice S N Phukan undertook a 'week-long junket' courtesy the defence ministry while investigating alleged corruption in defence deals.

'Outlook', in its forthcoming issue, has claimed that it has details that Justice Phukan, his wife and some lawyers of the Tehelka Commission were provided a specially chartered VVIP aircraft of the Indian Air Force to travel to Shirdi, Pune, Ahmednagar and Mumbai from Delhi in December 2003.

This was six weeks before Justice Phukan submitted his report to the government in which he is believed to have given a clean chit to Fernandes, according to a release issued by the magazine.

When contacted by 'Outlook', Justice Phukan confirmed he had travelled on the IAF aircraft. "I did go on the trip. If you have any questions ask the government," he was quoted as saying.

Asked why his wife accompanied him and what the purpose of going to Shirdi was, he said, "That (Shirdi) was on the way, and why should you have a problem with that? I don't think this compromised the commission's findings at all."

At every destination, the magazine claimed, the judge and his entourage enjoyed the hospitality of one of the three defence forces. The red carpet was rolled out for him on the instructions of the defence ministry, allegations against which he was investigating at that time.

The ostensible reason for the trip was that the judge wanted to familiarise himself with the weapons system he was inquiring into.

However, a lawyer of the Commission, who was on the trip, was quoted as saying, "It was more of a holiday than anything else."

© Copyright 2005 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.
Share your comments

 What do you think about the story?

Read what others have to say:

Number of User Comments: 1

Sub: Whatever the truth.

Phukan compromised his position. He should be tried and cross-examined by the Apex. If found guilty, the Apex should not hesitate giving him a couple ...

Posted by chanakya



Copyright 2006 India Limited. All Rights Reserved.