The main witness in much published CD case, Vijay Singh Mankotia identified the voice samples of the CD, played in court of Special Judge B.L. Soni confirming that the voice recorded in an audio cassette “seem to be that of Virbhadra Singh, his wife Pratibha Singh and former Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Mohinder Lal.”
Once, Mr. Mankoita was considered Virbhadra Singh’s political adversary as after facing suspension from the Congress, Mankotia had released the cassette. Recently he shifted his stand joining the Congress and fighting the Vidhan Sabha election on party ticket was being speculated to become hostile in the CD case while recording his witness.
Special Public Prosecutor Jiwan Lal Sharma told that Mr. Mankotia largely confirmed his earlier statements against Mr. Singh and his wife and he could not be called hostile in the court as he did not deny the main facts recorded by the investigating agency during handing over the audio CD and cassette to prosecution. Mr. Mankotia also told in the court that somebody dropped the cassette at his residence. Later, he handed it over to the police for investigation.
Mr. Mankotia’s statement before the court is significant as he has all along being insisting that telephonic conversations of monetary transactions were that of the couple and the officer who is dead now. Virbhadra Singh and his wife were booked by the state police on August 3, 2009, under the ‘Prevention of Corruption Act for alleged misuse of official position and criminal misconduct’ on the basis of an audio cassette released by Mankotia in 2007. A day after the framing of charges, the septuagenarian leader resigned as the union minister for micro, small and medium enterprises.