Bhushans` won`t quit, Hegde has a rethink
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Last Updated: Friday, April 22, 2011, 00:12
New Delhi/Bangalore: Unfazed by controversies surrounding the Bhushans, civil society activists Thursday rejected demands for their resignation from the joint drafting committee on Lokpal Bill but one of its members Justice Santosh Hegde said he is thinking of resigning from it.

The demand for the resignation of lawyer Shanti Bhushan and his son Prashant grew today following a CFSL report that a CD allegedly involving the senior Bhushan was not tampered with.

While the Bhushans kept mum, activists Arvind Kejriwal and Kiran Bedi ruled out their resignation because of the "malicious campaign" against them.

They told a press conference in Delhi that the civil society members were together and the "entire malicious" campaign launched by some "corrupt elements in and out of government" was aimed at derailing the drafting of a strong Lokpal Bill.

"There is no question of anybody resigning from the joint committee. No one will resign. We are at a historic juncture where we are going to have a strong anti-corruption law. We are not the ones who run away from battle zones."

However, upset over the "vilification campaign", Justice Hegde, who is also Lokayukta in Karnataka, said in Bangalore that he was thinking of resigning but he would consult his colleagues in the anti-corruption movement in Delhi on Saturday and take a decision.

He was angry that Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh had attacked him yesterday that he was protecting Karnataka Chief Minister from corruption charges.

"This is absolutely false. This is contrary to facts. I am not not a politician. I cannot fight this type of battle," he said adding the former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister's remarks were "hurting" at a time when his party leader Sonia Gandhi had made it clear she does not not support any smear campaign.

"No one has fought the Karnataka Chief Minister as I had done, not even the Congress in the state. People here know it," he said.

Hegde said he would discuss with his colleagues in the civil society movement including Anna Hazare and take a decision whether to continue in the joint drafting committee.

Acting on a complaint, the Delhi police had referred a to the Central Forensic Laboratory (CFSL) a CD purported to have conversations between Shanti Bhushan, Mulayam Singh Yadav and Amar Singh in which a suggestion is being made about fixing a judge.

The CFSL has found that the CD was not not doctored as "the recorded conversation is in continuity and no abrupt change in speech signal detected".

This contradicted a report obtained by Prashant Bhushan from a private lab in Hyderabad the CD was tampered with.


First Published: Friday, April 22, 2011, 00:12

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