NEW DELHI: Union minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on Monday questioned the authenticity of the audio clips, cited by the Congress to allege his involvement in a purported bid to topple the Rajasthan government, after the state police served him a notice to give his voice sample and record his statement.
In a statement, Shekhawat, a senior BJP leader from Rajasthan, sought to know the source of the audio clips and how the state police got them. His office received the notice served by the Rajasthan Police SOG (special operations group), which is probing the case, on Saturday, he said.
Shekhawat said, "They (police) should first clarify about authenticity of these tapes. Who recorded it and where did the SOG get it from. Investigation should be carried out to find out if these tapes are genuine or not."
His remarks indicate that he is unlikely to join the probe amid a raging political controversy over the audio clips. The Congress has alleged that the BJP leader's voice figure in them, a charge refuted by him. The BJP has called these clips "manufactured" and demanded a CBI probe, questioning if the state police tapped phones of politicians in violation of rules.
The FIR registered by Rajasthan Police mentions details of alleged conversations of rebel Congress MLA Bhanwarlal Sharma with Gajendra Singh and a third man, named Sanjay Jain. The police has arrested Jain. The Congress claims Gajendra Singh, the name mentioned in the FIR, is a reference to Union minister Shekhawat.
Rajasthan plunged into a political crisis after Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot's deputy Sachin Pilot rebelled against him. The Congress later removed Pilot as the deputy chief minister and also as the party's state unit head.