CBI to file FIR against Harish Rawat in sting video case

The CBI will file an FIR against former Uttarakhand chief minister Harish Rawat over a 2016 sting video that purportedly showed him negotiating a deal to buy the support of MLAs who had rebelled against him, a court was told on Tuesday. The Central Bureau of Investigation told this to Justice R C Khulbe while giving details sought by the Uttarakhand High Court on the progress in the case. The video had surfaced in 2016 when the state was under Presidents rule. It purportedly showed the Congress leader discussing money to win back the support of disgruntled MLAs who had crossed over to the BJP, so that he could to get back in power. After the reinstatement of the Harish Rawat government following a floor test, his cabinet proposed that the CBI probe be withdrawn and a state-level special investigation team (SIT) formed to look into the matter. But the central government rejected the proposal and the CBI inquiry continued. Rawat challenged the inquiry in the high court. Meanwhile, one of the rebel MLAs, Harak Singh Rawat, filed a separate petition claiming that an inquiry on the recommendation of the governor cannot be set aside by the state cabinet. Both petitions are being heard by the high court. The next hearing is on Sept 20.