New Delhi/Bhopal: The Congress on Monday reiterated its demand for a Supreme Court-monitored CBI probe into the Vyapam scam in Madhya Pradesh and called for Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan's immediate resignation for "misleading" the scam probe.
"The chief minister is the kingpin of the Vyapam scam. Any probe into it will essentially require that he is thoroughly interrogated and investigated," Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala told media persons in New Delhi.
"This is only possible if he steps down as chief minister. Therefore, the Congress demands that he resign immediately and submit himself to an independent inquiry," he added.
A similar demand was made in Bhopal by the Congress's Madhya Pradesh unit which accused Chief Minister Chouhan of being responsible for the chaos created by the Vyapam-organised examinations and the deaths, under suspicious circumstances, related to the scam.
Terming Chouhan as the "kingpin" of the Vyapam scam, Congress state unit president Arun Yadav told reporters: "The chief minister and his family are involved in the Vyapam scam. The matter as of now is being investigated by the special task force under the supervision of the high court-appointed special investigation team. But the Congress does not trust this investigation because it is being conducted, keeping in mind state instructions."
The scam is related to irregularities in admission and recruitment conducted by Madhya Pradesh Vyavsayik Pareeksha Mandal (Vyapam). More than 40 people associated with the scam have lost their lives, including a TV journalist covering it.
In New Delhi, Surjewala said: "Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Sunday demanded a neutral investigation in the Vyapam deaths, including that of a journalist. Is Chouhan refusing to listen to his own government?"
"Does his reluctance reflect his jitteriness and an attempt to stifle the truth and divert the investigation," he asked.
"Chouhan is misleading the nation and telling a lie. He is again hoodwinking the nation. Why was the chief minister not able to stop this sinister scam between 2009 and 2013," the Congress leader remarked.
Senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh, who filed a PIL in the Supreme Court to seek an independent probe into the scam, tweeted: "Shivraj Singh Chouhan should be sacked and an impartial probe should be done in the Vyapam scam."
Arun Yadav said in Bhopal: "The Vyapam scam has snowballed into a scam of mega-proportions. Its enquiry should be conducted by the Central Bureau of Investigation under the purview of the Supreme Court. The chief minister has long promoted anti-corruption. That being so, he should himself ask for a CBI probe."