Cash-for-vote: 'No proof against Amar, Patel'
The LS panel looking into the cash-for-vote scam has reportedly found no clinching evidence against SP leader Amar Singh and Cong leader Ahmed Patel, reports HT Correspondent.delhi Updated: Oct 07, 2008 02:58 IST
The Lok Sabha parliamentary panel looking into the cash-for-vote scam has reportedly found no clinching evidence against Samajwadi Party (SP) general secretary Amar Singh and senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel, both Rajya Sabha members.
The seven-member panel looking into the trail of the money offered to three BJP MPs — Ashok Argal, Faggan Singh Kulaste and Mahavir Bhagora — said the panel is of the opinion that the case should be further probed by a proper investigating agency like the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
The money is presently in the custody of Lok Sabha secretary general P.D.T Acharya.
The panel will meet again on October 17 to finalise its draft report before handing it over to Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee and placing it before the House.
The Kishore Chandra Deo-headed panel — which also includes V K Malhotra, Rajesh Verma, C Kuppusami, Ram Gopal Yadav and Mohammad Salim — has been given time till October 20 to submit its report.
There are indications that there could be dissenting notes to the report amid speculation that the Opposition members like BJP’s V.K. Malhotra BSP’s Rajesh Verma and CPM Mohammad Salim may have their own views on the issue that has often threatened to turn partisan.
To avoid allegations of having soft pedalled on the issue, sources said the report would be presented in its full form.
It would include all documents and evidences taken from people including two BJP MPs and whistle- blowers like Sudheendra Kulkarni, Sanjeev Saxena and Sohail Hindustani to convey that it has been transparent in its findings. Bhagora had cited ill health to avoid appearing before the panel while the driver of the car Hashmat Ali failed to turn up.
The panel did not call Amar Singh or Ahmed Patel. “First there has to be sufficient case for calling them. And even it there is one, calling a Rajya Sabha member to appear before the panel is a cumbersome and long-dwawn procedure,’’ said a source.