Cash-for-vote scandal: SP, BJP MPs questioned

NEW DELHI: Samajwadi Party MP Rewati Raman Singh and Bharatiya Janata Party MP Ashok Argal were Monday questioned in the 2008 parliamentary cash-for-vote scam. Singh was questioned on the alle

Published: 25th July 2011 12:08 PM  |   Last Updated: 16th May 2012 08:47 PM   |  A+A-

NEW DELHI: Samajwadi Party MP Rewati Raman Singh and Bharatiya Janata Party MP Ashok Argal were Monday questioned in the 2008 parliamentary cash-for-vote scam. Singh was questioned on the alleged calls he received from former BJP Yuva Morcha member Suhail Hindustani to strike a deal with BJP MPs before the trust vote in the Lok Sabha.

While Singh was questioned in the morning, Argal, who was allegedly offered the bribe, arrived at the Delhi Police Crime Branch office at 4 p.m.

Singh was questioned for around 90 minutes by the Crime Branch team led by Deputy Commissioner of Police Ashok Chand. The Samajwadi MP stressed that the "conspiracy" behind the scandal should be "exposed".

He said later that his response was the same as that before a parliamentary panel which probed the alleged bribe to some MPs during the 2008 parliament trust vote.

"I have told police what I had said before the parliamentary committee. The conspiracy behind the cash for vote has to be exposed," Rewati Raman Singh said after the questioning.

The BJP MPs had claimed that Singh first contacted them on behalf of the then Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh, whom they met later. Sanjeev Saxena, a former aide of Amar Singh, then delivered an advance sum of Rs.1 crore.

Both Saxena and Hindustani are in jail in connection with the alleged scam.

Rewati Raman Singh had told the parliamentary committee that the BJP MPs met him on account of wanting to join the SP.

Reoti Raman Singh, an MP from Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh, arrived at the inter-state cell of the Crime Branch in New Delhi's Chanakyapuri at 11.45 a.m. from his residence on Copernicus Marg. He left the ppolice office at 1.30 p.m.

BJP MP Ashok Argal, one of the three party MPs who were allegedly bribed during the trust vote, was also questioned at the Crime Branch office, police said.

Rajya Sabha member Amar Singh was grilled for nearly four hours July 22 over the alleged bribery of three BJP lawmakers during the 2008 trust vote.

Saxena alleged that Amar Singh, then with the Samajwadi Party, had provided Rs.1 crore for buying the support of three BJP MPs in the trust vote the Manmohan Singh government sought in 2008. Wads of currency notes were shown in the Lok Sabha July 22, 2008, minutes before the vote was to take place.

Hindustani, who allegedly played the liaison man between the SP leader and the BJP MPs, also levelled the same allegations against Amar Singh.

The investigation into the case was speeded up after the Supreme Court last week slammed Delhi Police for their tardy approach in the case.

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