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Mayawati’s financial assets legal: SC

Coming as a huge relief for the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati, the Supreme Court has quashed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe in the nine-year-old disproportionate assets case against her.

Reacting to the court order, the former Uttar Pradesh chief minister said, 'I thank Satish Mishra for fighting my case in the Supreme Court. I thank the BSP party workers for showing patience and supporting me while the case was on against me.'

Mayawati was overjoyed with the relief given by the court. However, other political parties gave varied reactions. Her arch rival the Samajwadi Party showed disappointment at the court's verdict and slammed the CBI, saying it did not handle the case well. Its leader Shahid Siddiqui said, 'This is not Mayawati's victory but CBI's defeat, as the investigation agency committed technical errors. The CBI was supposed to investigate irregularities in the development of the Taj corridor. However, a probe into her assets was initiated.' Siddiqui added, 'Now, did the CBI commit this error on purpose to save Mayawati or was it a genuine mistake? These questions need to be answered.'

It is interesting to note that this court order came after the BSP gave the Congress its support for UPA's presidential candidate Pranab Mukherjee. While distancing themselves from this issue, the Congress leader and law minister Salman Khurshid said that this issue had nothing to do with politics. He said, 'It is not correct to link it with politics. We all must respect the Supreme Court... It is very very unfair to say that it has anything to do with the politics of the country. The Supreme Court is an autonomous, independent and highly respected institution of our country.'

However, the Bharatiya Janata Party attacked the UPA government on this issue. Its spokesperson  Tarun Vijay said, 'We are saying that the government is misusing the investigating agencies to use them as political tools and have the political support from the various political parties which can be compelled through such tactics.'

The apex court said in its order that there is no finding in the CBI's status report of September 2008 that Mayawati had amassed disproportionate assets during the period 1995-2003.
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