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Cash-for-vote scam
SC slams Delhi Police for ‘hopeless’ probe
R Sedhuraman
Legal Correspondent

New Delhi, August 5
Slamming the Delhi Police for conducting a “half-hearted, meaningless and hopeless” investigation in the case relating to the alleged purchase of votes during the July 2008 confidence vote in the Lok Sabha, the Supreme Court today directed the police to trace the source of the money and book the culprits.

A Bench comprising Justices Aftab Alam and RM Lodha made the observations after going through the second status report filed by the Delhi Police. “Your second report is as meaningless or hopeless as the first report,” Justice Alam told Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Harin Rawal, who appeared for the police.

“The Delhi Police is capable of conducting the probe as best as any other agency, if not better, but seemed to be having some inhibitions in the case. Since the probe was initiated at the instance of the apex court, the police should drop the inhibition and conduct the investigation in the true spirit of the law,” the Bench said. “The investigations had so far been half-hearted. Why don’t you take it to a logical conclusion,” the Bench asked.

The status report merely talked of “circumstantial evidence” against someone and the “needle of suspicion” pointing towards two persons. “What are you doing regarding these inferences,” the Bench wanted to know from the police.

“It is distressing that middlemen of the cheapest kind tried to manipulate Parliament proceedings. To some extent, they succeeded. You must find out what is the source of the money,” Justice Lodha remarked.

The Delhi Police failed to achieve anything substantial in the case for two years and got “active” only after the apex court orders, the Bench noted. Initially, the ASG sought 40 days more for filing another status report in greater detail, but brought it down to 2-3 weeks as the court was reluctant to grant such a long time.

The Delhi Police has so far questioned former Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh, his alleged aide Sanjeev Saxena, and Suhail Hindustani, who reportedly liaised between the SP leader and BJP MPs. It has also interrogated SP MP Reoti Raman Singh and BJP MP Ashok Argal. It virtually gave a clean chit to the Congress and the SP during a hearing at the trial court here.





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