A defiant Buta Singh on Saturday refused to resign from his post in the wake of the bribery scandal, in which his son Sarobjit was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation, and claimed that he could have 'confessed under pressure'.
"Resign? Why should I resign," Singh shot back at reporters on being asked whether he will step down as Chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes after his son was arrested on the charge of demanding a bribe of Rs one crore from a Nashik-based contractor for closing a case against him.
"I am the chairperson of a constitutional forum. And I am capable, so why should I resign," he said.
When told that his son had confessed to taking the bribe amount and said that Buta Singh knew about the transaction, the former minister said, "He (Sarobjit) must have naturally made it (confession) under pressure."
Singh maintained that his son was "by all means, innocent". He said though he was not against any investigation, he doubted the integrity of the CBI. "I don't take CBI as a bible. What the CBI says has to be checked. The CBI should have intervened on the official recommendation that the Commission made but instead they intervened on the complaint of an accused," he said.
The former minister maintained that he had earlier written a letter to the police commissioner, complaining that attempts were being made by some people to frame him.
"Instead of taking action on the letter, they took his (Ramrao Patil's) complaint against me. The complaint (against me) has been procured by the CBI. CBI has made him (Patil) file the complaint," Singh said.
However, he refused to comment on whether the CBI was being pressurised to work against him. Singh said he wrote the letter to the police commissioner, as he had come to know through sources in Nashik that his sons were being approached through different people, to cast a net around him.
Asked about the legal options he was exploring, Singh said, "We will go through the Commission to the higher court. How will the Commission run if such obstacles are created by dacoits, mafia, goons and thugs?"
Refuting charges that he had harassed Patil, Singh said, "There are four other members...they have a sub-committee. All the disciplinary work, even this complaint, is before them. You ask them."
CBI today conducted searches at the house of Buta Singh's son in New Delhi and recovered three unlicensed fire arms and few live cartridges. A case under the Arms Act has been registered against Sarabjit at the Nizamuddin police station.
Reacting to the seizure, Buta Singh said his son had the licences for all the weapons recovered from his house during the raid. "The licences are there. Only my son knows where they are. When he comes (out of custody), he will produce them."