Cash-for-votes scam: Ex-BJP worker to be quizzed


New Delhi: The Delhi Police Tuesday issued notice to a former Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) worker, Suhail Hindustani, to appear for questioning Wednesday in the 2008 cash-for-votes scam.

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“Hindustani, an alleged conduit between Amar Singh and the BJP leaders, is most likely to be arrested after questioning depending on his evidence,” a Delhi Police officer said, requesting anonymity.

Hindustani claimed that was earlier a BJP youth wing member.

The police added that they have also sought the home ministry’s views on questioning former Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh and BJP MP Ashok Argal.

Argal who was among the three BJP MPs who waved bundles of notes in the Lok Sabha on July 22, 2008, claiming that they were bribed to abstain from voting in the trust vote triggered by the withdrawal of Left support to the United Progressive Alliance (UPA)-I government.

“We had written to the home ministry a few days ago for their directions and are waiting for their reply,” said a police officer.

The police arrested Sanjeev Saxena, Amar Singh’s former private secretary, in the case Sunday.

Saxena, who said he was working as Amar Singh’s secretary for three years, is understood to have told the police that Amar Singh’s driver Sanjay had gone along with him to deliver the money – as claimed by BJP MPs Fagan Singh Kulaste and Mahavir Bhagora.

The two were among the three MPs who had alleged they had been paid to abstain from the trust vote sought by the Manmohan Singh government after the Left withdrew support over the Indo-Us nuclear deal.

The MPs have told police that Amar Singh had introduced Saxena as his secretary.

Saxena told the police that he made a number of calls to Amar Singh July 21 and 22, 2008, before and after the cash was delivered.

Amar Singh, however, denied that Saxena was his aide.

The case, which has been activised by the recent intervention of the Supreme Court, is turning into a into a political slugfest, with the BJP and Congress trading charges.

Police are also trying to recover Saxena’s phone which was used to make the calls, and are also looking for Sanjay, the driver.

Saxena was caught on camera paying BJP MPs Kulaste, Bhagora and Ashok Argal bribes ahead of the confidence vote.

Kulaste, Argal and Bhagora had waved several bundles of notes inside the Lok Sabha on July 22, 2008 alleging that they were offered Rs.1 crore to abstain.

A seven-member parliamentary committee was set up soon after the cash-for-votes scam. The committee had directed the Delhi Police to investigate the case.