Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel on Thursday appointed controversial journalist Vinod Verma as his political advisor. Vinod Verma’s name had cropped in the infamous sex CD case in 2017. Verma, who has been facing charges of extortion and is currently out on bail, is believed to be a close confidant of chief minister Baghel.
Last year in October, the senior journalist was arrested by the state police after a case of blackmailing and extortion was registered on a complaint by BJP leader Prakash Bajaj. The BJP leader had alleged that he was getting calls from an unidentified caller for money. The caller, Bajaj claimed, told that he had a CD of his senior.
Acting on the complaint, police raided multiple people including Vinod Verma. The police claimed that it had recovered 500 CDs and pen drives from Verma’s residence during the search operation.
Later, a ‘sex CD’ featuring the then PWD Minister Rajesh Munat surfaced in the state capital. However, Munat termed the CD as fake and he filed a complaint against the then state Congress president Bhupesh Baghel. The state later transferred the case to the CBI.
This year in September, the central investigating agency filed the charge sheet in the case and named Bhupesh Baghel, Vinod Verma along with three others as accused. The agency has slapped the charges of forgery and criminal conspiracy. The CBI has also invoked 67A of the IT Act for circulating morphed CDs.
Chhattisgarh’s General Administration Department on Thursday appointed four advisors to the chief minister. Besides Verma, another journalist Ruchir Garg has been named media advisor to the Congress chief minister.