Amar Singh, two aides sent to jail

Rajya Sabha member and former Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh and two former BJP MPs were arrested yesterday and sent to judicial custody for alleged involvement in the attempt to bribe MPs ahead of the July 2008 trust vote in parliament.

In the dock: Amar Singh

They have been booked under section 120 (B) of the Indian Penal Code (criminal conspiracy) and section 12 of the Prevention of Corruption Act. Special Judge Sangita Dhingra Sehgal sent Amar Singh as well as Fagan Singh Kulaste and Mahavir Singh Bhagora to judicial custody till Sept 19.

He was soon whisked away by policemen. Dismissing their interim bail plea, the judge said: "The application is at prerequisite stage to decide. Therefore, let the prosecution file the replies." The judge also observed that grounds for interim bail are similar to that of regular bail.

On Aug 24, Delhi Police had filed a chargesheet in the court against six people, including Amar Singh. The 80-page chargesheet alleged that during investigation sufficient evidence had come on record that on July 22, 2008, Amar Singh hatched a criminal conspiracy with his secretary Sanjeev Saxena to deliver cash of Rs 1 crore as illegal gratification.

Police alleged that Singh 'conspired' with Saxena and others to bribe the then MPs and Sudheendra Kulkarni, a former associate of BJP leader LK Advani, played an 'active role' during the trust motion. The chargesheet also named Kulaste and Bhagora, arrested middleman Suhail Hindustani and Kulkarni.

There are 54 witnesses in this case, including CNN-IBN chief Rajdeep Sardesai. The chargesheet said the mastermind of the scandal was Kulkarni. He was arrested on July 17. He was accused of keeping the probe agency in the dark about the whole episode of which he had full knowledge.



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