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SC adjourns CBI's plea against Bombay HC order protecting advocates Grover, Jaising in FCRA case

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The Supreme Court on Friday adjourned a plea of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) challenging the Bombay High Court order which restrained it from taking any coercive action against NGO Lawyers Collective and its founding members, senior lawyers Anand Grover and Indira Jaising.

A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said it would hear the matter on November 14.

The CBI had registered a case against Grover and Lawyers Collective over alleged violation of the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA) in use of foreign funds received by the NGO.

Even though the FIR registered by the CBI does not name Jaising as an accused, the MHA complaint, which is part of the FIR, mentions her name.

Both Jaising and Grover approached the Bombay High Court seeking quashing of the FIR and said that no prima facie offences are made out in the FIR.

Taking cognizance of it, the court restrained the CBI to not take a coercive step against the duo. The agency had then challenged the same in the Supreme Court.

The agency said the High Court has neither rendered any finding as to how the FIR registered against the accused parties is unsustainable and bad in law nor referred to any finding as to how the continuance of the probe against them would be contrary to law.

The agency alleged that the NGO received foreign funds between 2009 and 2015, but failed to disclose a major part of it.

In May 2016, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) had suspended the FCRA registration of the NGO and denied its renewal. Six months later, the ministry also cancelled its registration under various sections od the of FCRA, 2010.

Subsequent to this, in July this year, surprise raids were conducted at the residence of Indira Jaising and Anand Grover and the offices of Lawyers Collective in Mumbai and New Delhi.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, November 08 2019. 12:20 IST