In a new twist in the 2008 cash-for-votes scam, former Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh on Monday named Congress leader Ahmed Patel as the source for the money in the scam that allegedly saved the UPA-I government in July 2008.
Appearing for Singh before special judge Sangita Dhingra Sehgal, senior counsel Ram Jethmalani said: "The place of receipt of the bribe was not Amar Singh's home, but Le Meridien Hotel. The person to pay the bribe was not Mr Amar Singh but obviously Mr Ahmad Patel, an MP and a very influential member of the party whose government was to be saved."
The surprise statement comes close on the heels of the Supreme Court asking the Delhi Police to trace the source of the bribe money and days after Singh's close aide Jaya Prada's outburst that if the ailing Rajya Sabha MP was made to suffer further, many big names would be in trouble.
The court extended Singh's interim bail till September 27.
Jethmalani's submission is in sharp contrast to his argument on September 12, when the senior lawyer had told the court that the wads of currency notes displayed were "likely to be from the BJP".
Reacting to Jethmalani submission, Patel said, "It is all baseless and humbug and I have already clarified about it."
Besides, the court also directed BJPleader LK Advani's former aide Sudheendra Kulkarni, a co-accused in the case, to appear before it on September 27 without fail.