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Court issues production warrant against ex-Union minister PK Thungon

New Delhi: A Delhi court has issued production warrant against former union minister P K Thungon, who is in jail in a graft case, for his alleged role in a scam relating to allotment of government shops during 1993-94.

Special CBI Judge Sanjeev Aggarwal issued warrant against Thungon, also a former Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh, for September 14 after the court was informed that he was not present in the hearing as he was lodged at Rohini Jail here.

“Regarding accused P K Thungan, it is stated that he is in judicial custody and at present he is lodged at Rohini Jail in another corruption case. Issue production warrant against accused P K Thungan for the next date of hearing,” the court said.

The court fixed the matter on September 14 for recording of statement of accused persons under section 313 of the CrPC as prosecution evidence in the case is complete.

Thungon was awarded a four-and-a-half year jail term in a 1998 graft case relating to misappropriation of central funds in July this year.

Thungon, who was Minister of State for Urban Affairs and Employment at the time of alleged offence, has been facing trial in this case along with then Urban Affairs and Employment Minister Sheila Kaul, three private persons Lhakpa Tsering, Krishna and Tulsi Balodi.

Meanwhile, the court also received death verification report of Sheila Kaul that she has died on June 13 this year, following which it abated proceedings against her.

Accused Balodi had also died earlier and proceedings were abated. A case was registered by the CBI in 1996 against Kaul, Thungon, his nephew Tsering, Krishna and Balodi for allegedly hatching a conspiracy in allotting shops and stalls in 1994.

According to CBI, the five accused allegedly conspired during September 1993 to June 1994 with the object of dishonestly and fraudulently obtaining undue benefit in the allotment of shops on economical licence fee basis in contravention of rules governing such allotments.

CBI has claimed that Kaul and Thungon allegedly committed offence of criminal breach of trust to cause undue pecuniary advantage to their relations and friends, Tsering, Krishna and Balodi and dishonestly allowed these three to convert to their own the government shops entrusted to the minister.

It has said that in pursuance to conspiracy, Kaul abused her official position as Minister and in the capacity of custodian of government shops, dishonestly and without any public interest sanctioned allotments of three shops without calling for any tenders of applications from general public on mere recommendation of Thungon in a market opposite Red Fort.

The agency has also alleged in the charge sheet that Kaul caused huge pecuniary advantage to Tsering, Krishna and Balodi and corresponding loss to the state exchequer.

CBI said the case was registered after the Supreme Court in 1996 directed the agency to probe the allegations of corruption and bribery in the matter of out-of-turn allotment of government shops and lodge cases against the offenders.

The three shops were alloted on April 9, 1994 and May 12, 1994, CBI has said. The court had framed charges against the accused in March 2009 for the offences of criminal conspiracy read with criminal beach of trust by public servant of the IPC and under relevant provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.