Jaipur (Rajasthan) [India], June 23 (ANI): Rajasthan Congress party's chief whip Mahesh Joshi, who has been summoned by Delhi Police Crime Branch to appear before it in an alleged phone tapping case involving Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, on Wednesday alleged that the Union minister was the "main character" in a conspiracy to topple the Rajasthan government.
"Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat turned out to be the main character in the conspiracy to topple the democratically elected government in Rajasthan. The Prime Minister should have asked for his resignation or sacked him. But it did not happen," Joshi told reporters here.
"Instead of taking action against him, the Prime Minister and the Home Minister gave the responsibility to Delhi Police to protect him. That's why notices are being issued. It's Gajendra Singh Shekhawat who should have been examined as he had many allegations against him," Joshi said.
Joshi also said that matter was being given a "political colour".
The Delhi Police Crime Branch had on Tuesday served notice to the Congress chief whip in the Rajasthan Assembly asking him to appear before it on June 24 in connection with the alleged phone tapping case that came to light earlier this month.
The notice was served on the basis of a complaint lodged by the Union Jal Shakti Minister Shekhawat who had alleged that the Congress government in Rajasthan had been tapping phones of public representatives illegally and using them as a political weapon.
Speaking to ANI earlier, Shekhawat had said, "Present Congress government has been engaged in phones tapping of public representatives illegally and using it as a political weapon. This has been alleged many times. Last year Chief Minister said that it does not happen in Rajasthan but his minister admitted in the Assembly that phones were tapped illegally."
Several MLAs and ministers in Rajasthan have also raised the issue.
"I do not know whether my phone is being taped or not. But many MLAs have said that mobile phones are being taped. Many officials' also told them (MLAs) that it seems that there are efforts to tap them. MLAs have informed this to chief minister also," Congress MLA VP Solanki had told ANI.
State Transport Minister Pratap Singh Khachariyawas had, however, refuted the allegations.
"Rajasthan Government does not indulge in tapping phones. It is not our character. If an MLA says that his phone is not tapped but mentions other MLAs who say that their phones have been tapped, then he should reveal those names and speak to the Chief Minister," Khachariyawas had said.
The phone-tapping controversy had surfaced in July last year when Sachin Pilot had rebelled against chief minister Ashok Gehlot and accompanied by MLAs who supported him had camped in Haryana. Audio clips of phone conversations purportedly between Shekhawat and Congress leaders had come out.
There were allegations from Congress leaders that BJP leaders were indulging in horse-trading to topple the Rajasthan state government. (ANI)