Jaipur, July 29: Rebel Congress MLA Bhanwarlal Sharma has filed a petition in the Rajasthan High Court seeking to quash an FIR against him in connection with the audio tapes case. The MLA had sided with Sachin Pilot after the latter’s open revolt against Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot.
Sharma in his petition pleaded to the high court to quash the FIR, terming the case against him as politically motivated, The Financial Express reported. He also demanded from the HC to transfer the investigation to the National Investigation Agency from the Special Operation Group of the Rajasthan police. The MLA argued that he does not expect a fair probe into the case by the state investigative agency as the Rajasthan Chief Minister has given public statements against him. The Home department is headed by Gehlot himself and the SOG reports to him directly.
Bhanwarlal Sharma has been suspended from the Congress party’s membership for alleged involvement in the conspiracy to topple the Ashok Gehlot government.
The audio tapes deal with an alleged conspiracy to topple the Congress government in Rajasthan led by Ashok Gehlot.
The case against Sharma was filed by the SOG on July 17 on charges of sedition (124 A) and criminal conspiracy (120 B) under the Indian Penal Code. The case was registered on a complaint by Congress chief whip Mahesh Joshi.
Three audio tapes had surfaced online earlier. In one of the tapes, Sharma was allegedly talking to BJP leader and Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat for toppling the Ashok Gehlot government through horse-trading.
In another tape, he was allegedly heard talking to one middleman Sanjay Jain over the same issue. The SOG has already arrested Sanjay Jain and issued notice to Shekhawat.
The Congress party has charged that Sanjay Jain has BJP links, an allegation categorically rejected by the saffron party. The BJP has said that the party has no connection to him.