Two years after they registered a case in the matter, the Delhi Police is finally on the verge of completing investigations into the infamous cash-for-votes scandal that had rocked Parliament in July, 2008.
"There had been certain procedural delays but they are now out of the way. We will complete investigations into the matter as per provisions of the law within two months," Delhi Police commissioner BK Gupta told Hindustan Times.
According to the Delhi Police, the matter had been reported to and handed over to its crime branch in early 2009 and a case under section 12 of the Prevention of Corruption Act was registered on January 27, 2009.
"The home ministry had received a report on the issue soon after it had erupted in Parliament in July, 2008. The same report and a CD containing incriminating evidence had been handed over to us and dispatched to the Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) for verification," explained a top Delhi Police source investigating the matter.
During the trust vote after the Left and its other allies withdrew support to the UPA government over the controversial Indo-US nuclear deal on July 28, 2008, three BJP MPs, Fagan Singh Kulaste, Mahavir Bhagora and Ashok Argal, waved bundles of thousand-rupee notes on the floor of the house alleging that they had been bribed to pledge support to the UPA.
"Forensic examination of the said CD has verified the authenticity of its contents. Our probe into the matter got delayed as the CFSL results were received only in early January this year," the officer said.
Sources also attributed the delay to a protracted procedure as far as questioning sitting MPs is concerned.
"There is a set procedure for investigating such charges when the person in question happens to be a sitting MP. Procuring the go-ahead from the Speaker delayed us to a great degree. Though we have already questioned Kulaste and Bhagora, we are yet to get the go-ahead to question Ashok Argal. It is only after all three MPs have been questioned that culpability can be ascertained and affixed," the officer said.
During the trust vote after the Left parties withdrew support to the UPA government over the Indo-US nuclear deal on July 28, 2008, three BJP MPs —Fagan Singh Kulaste, Mahavir Bhagora and Ashok Argal — waved bundles of thousand-rupee notes in Parliament
The MPs alleged that they had been bribed to pledge support to the UPA.