George Fernandes demands apology from Congress party

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New Delhi, Aug 24 (ANI): Former Defence Minister George Fernandes demanded an apology from the Congress Party, as his name was not figuring in the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) charge sheet in the coffin scam.

Congress, which was an opposition party in 2002, severely criticised Fernandes as having role in the Coffin Scam, and even boycotted him in the Parliament.

In a signed press statement Fernandes accused Congress for demoralising the troops to gain the political advantage.

"I needed no 'clean chit' from the CBI to know that the aluminium casket purchase issue had never even come to my table during my tenure as Defence Minister let alone my drinking the blood of martyrs, as the Congress accused me of doing," Fernandes stated.

The CBI, which filed a charge sheet of the scam on August 19, did not include Fernandes's name.

The charge sheet named the then military attachi in the Indian Embassy in the US, Major General (Retd) Arun Roy, Col (Retd) S K Malik, Col S D Singh and US based businessman Victor Baiza.

The NDA Government's decision to purchase steel body bays to bring back the bodies if the martyrs of Kargil conflict had racked the nation during the summer of 1999.

The Comptroller and auditor General also found a lot of flaws in the procurement of caskets.

The UPA government, which assumed power in 2004, ordered probe against all the deals signed during the NDA regime. (ANI)

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