Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Congress demands a judicial probe into Narendra Patel's charge

The Congress on Monday demanded a judicial investigation by a sitting High Court judge into the allegation raised by Narendra Patel, a Patidar quota agitation leader, that the BJP offered him ₹1 crore to join the party.

At a press conference, Congress leader Manish Tewari said the allegations had not been levelled by any political rival, but by “activists of an organisation that the BJP is trying to split”.

Serious allegations

“The allegations are very serious and the finger of suspicion points to the Gujarat BJP chief. First, it demands a reaction from the Prime Minister. We demand that an FIR be registered and an investigation takes place under the supervision of a sitting High Court judge,” Mr. Tewari told presspersons.

Watch: I was offered Rs. 1 crore to join BJP, alleges Patidar leader Narendra Patel

The former Union Minister was responding to allegations made by Mr. Patel, an associate of Hardik Patel, leader of the Patidar agitation.

On Sunday, Mr. Patel, a convener of the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti, held a press conference in which he alleged that ₹10 lakh was given to him to cross over to the BJP.

Rahul tweets

Reacting to the press conference, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi played on the theme of Gujarati pride to target the ruling party.

“Gujarat is priceless. It has never been bought. It can never be bought. It will never be bought,” Mr. Gandhi tweeted.

In his press conference, Mr. Tewari alleged that “attempts to buy is not new” and the BJP had tried to buy Congress lawmakers during the Rajya Sabha elections as well.

“Modiji doesn’t tire saying na khaunga, na khane doonga [Will neither indulge in corruption nor will tolerate any corruption], but the allegations of bribery are a blot on our democracy. It shows that the BJP is frustrated and scared of losing the elections,” Mr. Tewari said

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