Over 6800 corruption cases probed by CBI pending trials in courts

As many as 6,841 corruption cases probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation were pending trials in different courts, 313 of them for more than 20 years, according to the latest annual report of the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC).

Of the total cases, 2,039 were pending trials for more than 10 years and up to 20 years, 2,324 for over five years and up to 10 years, 842 for more than three years and up to five years and 1,323 for less than three years, as on December 31, 2022, it said.

“The Commission took note of the large number of cases pending trial in different courts. It was observed that as on 31.12.2022, 6,841 number of cases were pending trial, out of which 313 number of cases were pending (trial) for more than 20 years,” the report said.

In addition to these, a total of 12,408 appeals and revisions in the corruption cases were pending in high courts and the Supreme Court, 417 of them for more than 20 years.

As many as 688 such appeals and revisions were pending for “more than 15 years but less than 20 years”, 2,314 for “more than 10 but less than 15 years”, 4,005 for “more than five but less than 10 years”, 2,881 for “more than two but but less than five years” and 2,103 for “less than two years”, the report said.

It said 692 cases were pending probe by the CBI, 42 for more than five years, as on December 31, 2022.

Normally, it is required by the CBI to complete an investigation within one year of registration of a case.

A total of 60 cases were pending probe “more than three years but less than five years”, 79 for “more than two years but less than three years”, 138 for “more than one year but less than two years” and 373 for “less than one year”, said the report released recently.

“Completion of investigation would imply filing of charge sheets in courts, wherever warranted, after receipt of sanction from the competent authority. The Commission has observed that there have been some delays in completing investigations in certain cases,” it said.

Some of the reasons for the delay include “delay in investigation due to excessive work”, “inadequacy of manpower”, “delay in obtaining responses to Letters Rogatory (LRs)” and “time taken in locating and examining witnesses living in distant places” among others, the report said.

There were also 52 cases of departmental action pending against ‘Group A’ officers of the CBI themselves, it said.

Of these, 23 cases were pending for more than four years, five between three to four years, seven between two and three years, nine between one year to two years and eight for less than a year, according to the report.

There were 19 cases of departmental action pending against ‘Group B and C’ personnel of the federal agency. Of these, three were pending for more than four years, it added.

The CBI had registered 946 cases in 2022 — 829 regular cases (RCs) and 117 preliminary inquiries (PEs).

Of these, 163 traps were laid for detection of bribery cases during 2022 while 46 cases for possession of disproportionate assets were registered during one year, the report said.

The CVC exercises superintendence over the work of the CBI in respect of investigation conducted under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Out of the 946 cases, 107 were taken up on the orders of the constitutional courts and 30 cases were initiated on references received from state governments/Union territories, the report said.

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