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CBI victimising my son: Buta
Published on 2 Aug. 2009 11:25 PM IST
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Former home minister Buta Singh Sunday accused the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) of “victimising” him and his son Sarabjot alias Sweety Singh, who was arrested for allegedly accepting a Rs.1 crore bribe. He, however, said he was ready to cooperate in the probe. “The CBI is corroborating with the complainant and is not playing the role of an investigating agency. I and my son are being victimised,” Buta Singh told reporters at a press conference here. “I am ready to cooperate with the investigation at any level but it should come through a proper designated channel,” he said. The former union minister, who is now chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes, also claimed that he was being politically targeted, but refused to name any political party. “I will reveal this when the right time comes,” Buta Singh said. His son Sweety Singh was arrested Friday on charges of accepting Rs.1 crore bribe - the first lot of the Rs.3 crore (Rs.30 million) that he had allegedly demanded from Nashik-based contractor Ramraj Patil to have a case against him withdrawn by the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes commission that Buta Singh heads. Sweety Singh has been remanded to police custody by a Mumbai court till Aug 5. Buta Singh said he had informed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh about the case and he would seek time to meet him. “The prime minister responded positively to my worries and asked me to brief him about the details related to the case,” he said. Expressing his loyalty to the Congress Party, he added: “I have full faith in the Congress party and my decision of fighting the Lok Sabha elections independently was not within the party code of conduct and I am regretting the same.” Buta Singh also refuted claims of the CBI that he met the complainant. “I was travelling at the time when the investigating agency is claiming that I met that person (Patil).” Asked if there was any pressure on him to resign, he said: “Only media is creating pressure... I will give an explanation before the appropriate forum when needed.” The former minister also alleged that the CBI was working at the behest of a man who “already faces 12 cases against him of different charges”. On Saturday, the CBI seized three unlicensed pistols and 38 cartridges from Sweety Singh’s Jangpura residence in south Delhi. A case under the Arms Act was registered against him at the Nizamuddin police station. About the pistols found in his son’s house, Buta Singh said: “My son was a shooting champion and all the guns are licensed but only my son knows where the licences are.” Responding to Buta Singh’s allegation, CBI director Ashwani Singh told reporters here: “Investigations in the case are on and we have not taken any stand on whether we have to question Buta Singh or not. But we will work purely under the ambit of the law.” According to the CBI, the corruption case against Sweety Singh follows a complaint from Ramraj Patil. Patil alleged that Sweety Singh demanded a bribe of Rs.30 million for the withdrawal of a case filed against Patil by a group of conservancy workers employed by him (Patil). Patil is a garbage collection contractor with the Nashik Municipal Corporation. Some 100 workers complained he was not paying their wages and had taken a bank loan of Rs.100 million (Rs.10 crore) in their name.

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