New Delhi: Giving a clean chit to the Congress and the Samajwadi Party in the 2008 cash-for-votes controversy in parliament, the Delhi Police on Thursday told a court in New Delhi that arrested middleman Sohail Hindustani, a former Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) worker, was the "mastermind" of the scandal.
"During investigation it has come on record that neither any leader of the Congress nor any leader of the Samajwadi Party tried to contact Sohail Hindustani to strike a deal for buying the support of three BJP MPs in a trust vote in 2008," police said.
The remarks were made while police were seeking two days' custody of Hindustani and Sanjeev Saxena, a co-accused and the first person to be arrested in the case.
"It is very important to confront both the accused as it will help us unearth the whole chain of conspiracy," said the public prosecutor.
Special Judge Sangeeta Dhingra Sehgal, however, sent both the accused to a day's police custody and posted the matter for Friday.
Saxena, the former private secretary of Rajya Sabha member Amar Singh, was brought before the court after his three-day police remand expired on Thursday.
Meanwhile, three new names have emerged during investigation into the case. These are SP Gupta, Arvinder Singh alias Lovely Singh and Aman Arora, police said.
They are the people with whom Hindustani allegedly tried to strike a deal for buying the support of three BJP MPs in a trust vote in 2008, claimed police.
According to documents presented in court, police said that the statements of all the three people were recorded.
Gupta, in his statement, said that July 20, 2008 Hindustani asked Gupta to meet him at India Islamic Cultural Centre where he sought his support in helping him strike the deal.
"Hindustani offered him three BJP MP's and requested him (SP Gupta) to talk to senior congress leaders to strike a deal for monetary consideration to influence voting in favour of congress party," said the police remand paper.
The prosecutor said after Gupta refused to do so, Hindustani with his help met Arvinder and Arora, who too declined to play any such role.
Terming Hindustani to be the "mastermind" of the case, the prosecutor said: "After failing to get any success to strike a deal with the Congress, Hindustani tried to involve leaders of the Samajwadi Party."
Hindustani was arrested Wednesday after around eight hours of questioning.
Police accused him of facilitating the deal of cash-for-votes in 2008. The first arrests in the case came July 16 when Saxena was taken into custody.
Saxena had alleged that Amar Singh, who was then a member of the Samajwadi Party, had provided Rs1 crore for buying the support of three BJP MPs in a trust vote in 2008.
Alleged middleman Hindustani also levelled the same allegations against Amar Singh, saying he was the "main" man behind the scandal.(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed)