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2005 cash-for-query scam: Delhi court frames charges against 11 former MPs

The 2005 cash-for-query scam was a sting operation conducted by two journalists that showed the 11 MPs taking cash for raising questions in Parliament.

india Updated: Dec 07, 2017 14:59 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India, New Delhi
2005 cash for query scam,2005 cash-for-query scam,sting operation
The 2005 cash-for-query scam is being heard at Delhi’s Tis Hazari court.(File photo)

A Delhi court on Thursday framed graft and criminal conspiracy charges against 11 former parliamentarians in the 2005 cash-for-query scam.

Special judge Kiran Bansal of the Tis Hazari court put the 11 former MPs and an individual on trial, which will commence from January 12.

The former MPs accused are YG Mahajan (BJP), Chhatarpal Singh Lodha (BJP), Anna Saheb MK Patil (BJP), Manoj Kumar (RJD), Chandra Pratap Singh (BJP), Ram Sewak Singh (Congress), Narender Kumar Kushwaha (BSP), Pradeep Gandhi (BJP), Suresh Chandel (BJP), Lal Chandra Kol (BSP) and Raja Rampal (BSP).

A sting operation against the then MPs was conducted by two journalists which was telecast on a private news channel on December 12, 2005. The sting, which showed them taking cash for raising questions in Parliament, came to be known as the cash-for-query scam.

In December 2005, the Lok Sabha had expelled 10 members, while Lodha was removed from the Rajya Sabha. The prosecution had relied upon the CDs/DVDs containing conversations among the accused and others.

The court also framed charges against Rampal’s then PA, Ravinder Kumar, special public prosecutor Atul Shrivastava said.

The proceedings against one of an accused, Vijay Phogat, have been abated as he has passed away. Phogat was alleged to be a middleman.

The court framed charges against the accused for the offences of criminal conspiracy under the IPC and provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

On August 10, it had ordered framing of charges against them but could not due to repeated non- appearance of the accused who repeatedly sought exemption from appearance.

The charge sheet was filed by the Delhi Police in 2009.

Besides the former Parliamentarians, two journalists were also charge-sheeted for allegedly abetting the offence under the anti-graft law and were summoned by the trial court. But the proceedings against them were quashed by the Delhi High Court.

First Published: Dec 07, 2017 14:22 IST