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Bofors case: BJP and Left seek fresh probe

New Delhi , Wed, 25 Apr 2012 ANI

New Delhi, Apr 25 (ANI): The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Left Front on Wednesday took the ruling Congress Party to task over new revelations made by former Swedish police chief Sten Lindstrom in connection with the controversial Bofors Gun scam.

Both parties said that Lindstrom's revelations certified that Italian businessman Ottavio Quattrochi had a major role to play in the over quarter of a century old scam.

"After today's (Tuesday's) revelation that Sten Lindstrom has made, that he did not make any effort to keep Quattrocchi out of this deal. This is a pertinent question which was raised earlier as well and the way in which the government helped Quattrocchi to leave India then," BJP spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy told media here.

"All this is in itself sufficient evidence to prove that some people from India were involved in the Bofors case. The government has tried to hide all of this and the CBI has also tried to hide it to a great extent," he added.

Communist Party of India (CPI) leader D Raja said: "The present revelation shows that Quattrochi was given safe passage. The government and the CBI must respond to it."

"Even after 25 years, Bofors continues to haunt. The new revelation is also one of the things, which are emerging. But why this revelation at this point of time? The report has come from another country and it has to be verified," Raja said.

In an interview that appears on the website, Lindstrom has owned up to being the person (Sweden's Deep Throat) who leaked over 350 documents to Indian journalist Chitra Subramanian, who broke the story.

Lindstrom has revealed that there was no evidence to suggest that former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi had taken bribe in the Bofors deal.

However, he did not seem to have done much to prevent the cover up that followed in both India and Sweden to protect main accused Ottavio Quattrocchi, against whom, says Lindstrom, there was conclusive evidence.

Lindstrom also gives a clean chit to Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan and his family, saying that the story against them was planted in Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter by Indian investigators.

"They gave me a list of names to pursue, including the name of Amitabh Bachchan... During that trip to Sweden, the Indian investigators planted the Bachchan angle on DN," he says.

The Bofors case dates back to 1986, when Swiss arms manufacturer Bofors landed a 15 billion dollar contract to supply Howitzer Guns to India. A year later, Swiss media began reporting that the company had paid massive kickbacks to Indian politicians and defence officials. (ANI)

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