Cong, BJP, BSP, JDU, AIADMK MPs lobby for fake oil major for Money

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by Singh, Dec 13, 2013.

  1. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Sting operation exposes 11 MPs willing to lobby for fake Australian oil major for cash


    NEW DELHI: Investigative website Cobrapost has exposed 11 Members of Parliament (MPs) as willing to write letters of recommendation for a fictitious foreign oil company for money. The expose also shows some of them offering to lobby with the ministry of petroleum and natural gas for the firm's proposed exploration contracts in India.

    The investigation showed MPs from the Congress, BJP, BSP, JD(U) and AIADMK willing to issue letters of recommendation to promote a fictitious Australian oil exploration company in exchange for fees ranging between Rs 50,000 and Rs 50 lakh. Six of these MPs have already written the letters for a fee.

    Code named Operation Falcon Claw, Cobrapost expose claims the MPs were willing to not only write recommendation letters but also lobby with the ministry to help the company secure oil exploration and rigging rights in the north-east.

    In all, 11 MPs from the Congress, BJP, JD(U), AIADMK and BSP are on camera willing to help the company set up shop in India. Cobrapost founder Aniruddha Bahal said none of the MPs bothered to check the antecedents of the firm.

    In 2005, in a similar expose, named Operation Duryodhan, Bahal and team had exposed 11 MPs who were willing to ask questions in Parliament for a fee.

    Bahal said this time, too, the MPs hankered after money, quoting as low as Rs 50,000 to a staggering Rs 50 lakh as the price for a letter of recommendation. One MP demanded that his fee be delivered through a hawala operator.

    The parliamentarians who were caught in the hidden camera were K Sugumar and C Rajendran from AIADMK; Lalu Bhai Patel, Ravindra Kumar Pandey and Hari Manjhi (BJP); Vishwa Mohan Kumar, Maheshwar Hazari and Bhudeo Chaudhary JD(U); Khiladi Lal Bairwa and Vikrambhai Arjanbhai (Congress) and Kaiser Jahan (BSP).

    Six MPs gave letters of recommendation in favour of Mediterranean Oil Inc, the fictitious firm, for anywhere between Rs 50,000 and Rs 75,000. Others won't settle for less than Rs 5 lakh for a single letter, and in one case an MP quoted a ridiculously high price for a single letter, at Rs 50 lakh, Bahal said.

    Some of these MPs were also willing to help with lobbying at the highest level of the petroleum ministry. Some would even offer to rope in a bunch of five MPs for the job, the expose showed.

    Lalu Bhai Patel, BJP MP from Daman and Diu, who was paid him Rs 50,000 for a recommendation letter, also agreed to lobby with the ministry. His fellow party leader Hari Manjhi from Gaya, Bihar, was also willing to follow suit.

    Maheshwar Hazari, the JD(U) MP from Samastipur, Bihar, too, agreed to rope in five MPs for lobbying with the ministry. Each MP would cost them Rs 5 lakh, the undercover reporters were told.

    Jasmir Ansari, the MLA husband of BSP MP Kaiser Jahan, went a step ahead to assure that they will back the project by talking to Congress president Sonia Gandhi or some other influential politician. He would charge Rs 5 lakh for three letters, one from his MP wife, and two from other MPs, the expose showed.

    Congress MP Khiladi Lal Bairwa quoted Rs 50 lakh as his price for writing a recommendation letter and invited the Cobrapost reporter to his Mansarovar address in Jaipur to deliver the "material".

    The expose was carried out by a reporter of Cobrapost, pretending to be Ashish Jadon, representing the fake oil company, the Mediterranean Oil Inc, based in Queensland, Australia. The reporter tapped a few middlemen and through them approached the staff of these parliamentarians who facilitated negotiations with their masters.

    The investigation proved that several touts operate in New Delhi who will facilitate such work with MPs. One Nair took them to three MPs, including his own master. Another tout Dharmendra introduced two MPs, while Avnish Singh, a well-connected tout, introduced the reporter to two more MPs.

    Sting operation exposes 11 MPs willing to lobby for fake Australian oil major for cash - The Times of India
     
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  3. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    So Cobrapost is not a Congress mouthpiece then? Good find.
     
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  4. Free Karma

    Free Karma Senior Member Senior Member

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    I saw this...but decided it was not worth reporting...as this is by cobrapost...the same one that made the AAP video..which was supposedly doctored.

    So I assumed this would have trickery and magics inside it....although, I wouldnt be surprised if the above mentioned politicians did actually agree to the bribe.
     
  5. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    AAP "sting" was done by Media Sarkar. EC didn't find anything sting worthy in it afaik.

    Cobrapost is run by Bal, who was also associated with Tehelka at one time iirc.
     
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  6. iNDiAN.96

    iNDiAN.96 Nationalist Senior Member

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    GobarPost filling the space for tehelka. Nice going.
     
  7. sydsnyper

    sydsnyper Senior Member Senior Member

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    Reeks of sensationalist reporting. Half a century of corruption and the glare of so many media stings would definately caution the MPs to not be so callous of their misdeeds...
     

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