CDs were fabricated, doctored, says Dhumal

Shimla, March 9 (IANS) A raging controversy over the audio CDs got a new twist Tuesday with Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal announcing in the state assembly that they were fabricated and doctored.

‘A CFSL (Central Forensic Science Laboratory) report shows discontinuity, editing, modification with alterations. Discontinuity was observed at five instances in one CD and three in the second CD,’ Dhumal said while replying on the motion of thanks on the governor’s address.

‘This means the CDs were recorded by using different speeches,’ he said while replying to the charge made by Congress Legislature Party leader Vidya Stokes that the state had earned disgrace after the CDs surfaced.

The two audio CDs circulating since January allegedly have Dhumal directing vigilance chief D.S. Manhas to tap the phones of former chief minister Virbhadra Singh and his wife Pratibha Singh.

Manhas is investigating the corruption cases registered against Singh and Pratibha Singh Aug 3, 2009.

Later talking to reporters, Dhumal said, ‘The investigating agency had sent the CDs to two CFSLs – one in Gujarat and the other in Chandigarh – for analysis. So far, the CFSL based in Gujarat has sent its report. We are still awaiting the report of the Chandigarh-based laboratory,’ he said.

However, Virbhadra Singh, who was booked on the basis of an audio CD where he was heard talking of money, has accused the state government of double standards.

In a statement last week, Singh said, ‘When I claimed that the CD allegedly containing my voice is fabricated, the government decided to send the CD to the CFSL in Chandigarh with a specific question as to whether a particular sentence extracted from the CD was in my voice or not…But when the CDs containing voices of Dhumal and Manhas surfaced, the same investigating agency merely asked the CFSL whether the CD was edited or not.’

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