Mumbai: The BJP demanded on Wednesday that the CBI should take action against Tehelka weekly magazine for misleading and fabricating false evidence in the Barak missile case.
"The CBI has closed the case against former defence minister George Fernandes and others. This is the same case `created` by Tehelka in 2001 to defame and discredit the then BJP-led NDA government," Maharashtra state BJP spokesperson Madhav Bhandari said here today.
"In, those days, a great hype was created about this story. After so many years, Tehelka`s falsehood has been established. Now the CBI should take action against Tehelka for misleading and fabricating false evidence," Bhandari said.
Seven years after it claimed a grand conspiracy including a huge bribe in Indian Navy`s purchase of Barak missile systems from Israel, the CBI has closed the case, admitting that it had no evidence against George Fernandes, former president of the Samata Party Jaya Jaitly, former Navy chief Admiral Sushil Kumar, businessman Suresh Nanda and others.
The Barak scandal came to light in 2001, when Tehelka released `Operation West End` sting operation tapes showing several important people like then Samata Party treasurer R K Jain and a close aide of George Fernandes, discussing bribes paid for swinging defence deals, including for the Barak missile purchase.
Bhandari also demanded that Maharashtra Home Minister R R Patil should disclose who exerted pressure on the Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) to grant "concessions" to US national Kenneth Haywood, who came under scrutiny after a terror group used his Wi-Fi network to send an e-mail about Gujarat serial blasts in 2008.
Reacting to charges being framed against 23 Indian Mujahideen men accused in the 2008 blasts, Bhandari said, that "Haywood is involved and has been declared an absconder".
"A senior Mumbai police officer was sympathetic to Haywood," Bhandari said.