The Special Operations Group (SOG) of the Rajasthan police has served a notice on Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat , asking him to get his statement recorded in connection with his alleged role in a conspiracy to topple the Ashok Gehlot government that was ‘revealed’ in some audio tapes last week. The subpoena has also asked Mr. Shekhawat to give his voice sample.
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SOG Additional Director-General Ashok Rathore said here on Monday that the notice had been served on the Minister through his personal secretary. The SOG had registered two separate first information reports on Friday in connection with the audio tapes on a complaint lodged by Congress chief whip Mahesh Joshi.
One of the FIRs, registered under Sections 124-A (sedition) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code, names Mr. Shekhawat, a rebel Congress MLA and a middleman. The audio tapes purportedly contained conversations between three persons about the strategies to topple the government.
The complainant alleged that one of three persons was Mr. Shekhawat. The alleged middleman, Sanjay Jain, has since been arrested and is being interrogated.
The SOG's notice was issued under Section 160 of the Criminal Procedure Code, dealing with the power of a police officer making an investigation to require the attendance of any person who may be acquainted with the facts and circumstances of a case.
In a statement issued in New Delhi, Mr. Shekhawat - elected to the Lok Sabha from Jodhpur - said the police should first clarify about the authenticity of the tapes. “Who recorded it and where did the SOG get it from? Investigation should be carried out to find out if these tapes are genuine or not,” he added.