Fresh summons to Harish Rawat in corruption case

New Delhi, May 22 (IANS) The CBI issued a fresh summons to Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat to appear for questioning on Tuesday in a corruption case filed after a “sting” video allegedly showed him offering bribes to buy legislative support, officials said.

The videographed “sting operation”, allegedly showing Rawat offering money to rebel Congress lawmakers to win their support ahead of a floor test in the 70-member house, was shot by a Noida-based private TV channel, Samachar Plus, and released on March 26 by nine rebel Congress legislators.

Based on a reference from the state government, then under President’s Rule after the Rawat government was dismissed on March 27, and further orders from the central government, the CBI on April 25 initiated a preliminary inquiry to determine the authenticity of the “sting operation” by Samachar Plus CEO and editor-in-chief Umesh Kumar.

Umesh Kumar was earlier questioned by the CBI.

The Bharatiya Janata Party had alleged that Rawat tried to win over the rebel Congress lawmakers by offering them money and government posts. Rawat has denied the charge.

A CBI source said a forensic report had confirmed that the CD was genuine and not doctored.

The CBI then issued the first summons to Rawat on May 5 to appear before it on May 9 but he had sought some time from the agency. He was reinstated as chief minister on May 11 after winning the vote of confidence in the assembly.

–IANS

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