Who benefited from cash-for-votes? Asks BJP

The BJP, Tuesday, tried to corner the UPS government over its role in the cash-for-votes scam.

New Delhi: Objecting to the arrest of
"whistle-blower" MPs in the cash-for-vote scam, BJP on Tuesday
demanded a deeper probe into the role of Congress which was
the "real beneficiary" of the trust vote in 2008 and trace the
source of money allegedly used to buy votes of MPs.

BJP said no action has been initiated against the
beneficiaries of the scam, while those MPs who were
whistle-blowers in the case were arrested and sent to jail.
Describing the arrest of former SP leader Amar Singh as "a
step is in the right direction", BJP spokesman Ravi Shankar
Prasad said however, initiating action against the
whistle-blower MPs was "completely mala fide".

Prasad said that while the Government had a law which
protected whistle-blowers on the one hand, the CBI is
targeting and arresting them in this case.

BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain demanded a deeper probe
into the scam, saying "now that it has been proved that the
money was given to win the no-confidence motion."

"BJP has been saying all along that the Manmohan Singh
government was saved in an illegal manner by paying bribes to
MPs. But we consider the arrest of the whistleblower MPs as
wrong. Delhi Police should expand the ambit of its probe
to find out the role of the Congress," he said.

Former BJP MPs Faggan Singh Kulaste and Mahavir Bhagore
were also arrested today in the cash-for-vote scam, along with
Amar Singh.

Hussain said, "if the Delhi police has accepted that Amar
Singh is guilty then the beneficiaries should also be probed.
He was the anchor for the cash-for-vote and the government
kept saving the guilty till now." adding that
Delhi police should explain why Congress leaders were not
probed, he said.

Another senior BJP leader Rajiv Pratap Rudy also
questioned why action was not initiated against those who were
the beneficiaries of the cash-for-votes.

"This was the biggest scandal of the century which
happened in Parliament," Rudy said, adding that "it was a
matter of concern that the major charge of who the
beneficiaries were has not been clarified".

Prasad charged that the BJP whistle-blower MPs, who
exposed this "most shameful saga to corrupt Indian democratic
process" were now being targeted.

He insisted that had the Supreme Court not intervened
in the cash-for-vote case, no action would have been initiated
into the scam and Amar Singh would not have been arrested.
"The larger question remains from where did the money
come, at whose instance was Amar Singh active, and who was the
beneficiary. This is very important for investigation as Amar
Singh was not a minister in UPA, nor Samajwadi Party a part of
the government," said Prasad.

BJP MP Ashok Argal, who along with two of his colleagues
had brought Rs one crore in the Lok Sabha during the trust
vote in July 2008, asked if he had indulged in corruption
would he have got the currency notes to Parliament.

"If we had indulged in corruption would we have called
for TV cameras? Would we have brought notes to Parliament to
prove how the Congress government was being saved," he asked.

"You all know what means were adopted when the UPA-I
government of Manmohan Singh was reduced to a minority. All
this is happening because of that," he told reporters outside

Argal also wanted to know why media persons were not
named as accused in this case. He contended that a newsweekly
magazine was spared despite having conducted a sting

"All this has happened because MPs were managed, the
government was saved. Why did the MPs change their parties? Do
MPs change loyalties for free," he asked.

Argal said he would remain in the BJP for the rest of his
life and would never support the Congress.

Rudy said "it is the right time for Amar Singh to speak
out the truth". Rudy sought to know "for whom and under what
pressure was Amar Singh took this step" and asked him to name
the beneficiaries of the cash-for-vote scam.

He also sought a probe in the UPA`s role in the whole
episode along with any other beneficiaries.

Hussain earlier said the UPA Government did not have any
right to stay in power anymore in view of these revelations.


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