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HVK Archives: Congress shows lack of legal knowledge

Congress shows lack of legal knowledge - Newstime

N K Singh in New Delhi ()
February 7, 1998

Title: Congress shows lack of legal knowledge
Author: N K Singh in New Delhi
Publication: Newstime
Date: February 7, 1998

It appeared to be a response of an infirm warrior when the
Congress produced the photocopies of a statement of Bharatiya
Janata Party leader Atal Behari Vajpayee's reported confessional
statement recorded by a court 56 years ago and sought to brand
him as anti-freedom struggle.

The Congress attack came through a press statement signed by
party spokesman V N Gadgil who is himself a law expert but who
has tried to confuse the media and the masses on the legal term
'confessional statement'. Of course, section 164 Indian Penal
Code provides for recording of statement (or confession) of
accused but it does not mean that the statement seeks to
apologise as the Congress has tried to project through a faulty

The Congress accusation seems In response to the Bharatiya Janata
Party's efforts to rake up the issue of Sonia Gandhi's Italian
origin and also to seek the credit for Indian independence.
However, it is as feeble as it is puerile.

The Congress circulated the photo-copies of a onfessional
statement' of Vajpayee recorded by a court in which he was
produced on September 1, 1942. However, while trying to malign
the BJP leader, the Congress strategists did not take into
consideration the logical infirmities that its accusation

The Congress recalled the portion of an election speech of
Vajpayee dated January 21, 1998, in which he had said that he had
participated in the Quit India movement and had not apologised to
the British government. After producing the photo-copies of the
recorded statement (originally in Urdu but translated in English
courtesy Congress) the party disputed Vajpayee's claim and
alleged that in fact Vajpayee had disclosed the names of two
freedom-fighters, one of whom was sentenced to five-year

The Congress-supplied recorded 'confessional statement' read
thus: "On 27th August , 1942 'Alha' was being held in Bateshwar
Bazar. At about 2 pm Kakua alias Lila Dhar and Mahuan came to the
'Alha' and delivered a speech and persuaded the people to break
the forest law. Two hundred people went to the forest office and
I along with my brother followed the crowd and reached Bateshwar
forest office. I and my brother stayed below and all other people
went upstairs. I do not know the name of any, person, except
Mahuan and Kakua, who were there."

The second para of the statement goes: "I along with my brother
started to go to Maipura and the crowd was behind us. The crowd
forcibly turned out the goats from the cattle-pound and the crowd
was setting Bichkholi on fire. Ten or 12 persons were breaking
the forest office. I was at a distance of 100 yards. I did not
cause any damage. I did not render any assistance to demolish the
government building.

Thereafter, we went to our respective homes. The statement was
read over and confirmed." What the Congress did not know is that
an exculpatory statement is not a confession but an inculpatory
statement is a confession.

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