BJP leaders misused public office: Congress

New Delhi, Feb 14 (IANS) The Congress on Tuesday accused Union Minister H.N. Ananth Kumar and former Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa of “corruption by misusing power to collect money” and demanded action against the two leaders.

“The country never saw such a glaring incident where a senior member of the cabinet admitted to collection of money and sharing booty at the highest level. The onus lies on taking action and sacking both Ananth Kumar and Yeddyurappa at the doorsteps of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah,” Congress leader Randeep Surjewala told a press conference here.

Surjewala released a video clip of a purported conversation between Ananth Kumar and Yeddyurappa — both senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders — regarding collection and payment of money by them and a diary seized by the Enforcement Directorate containing sensitive information against certain Congress leaders.

“The incident has exposed corruption of the BJP leaders. The video of the shameful and sinful conversation dated February 12 between these leaders took place during a Bengaluru meeting of the BJP. It reveals blatant misuse of political power and public office,” Surjewala told the media here.

When asked, Surjewala denied possibility of the conversation between Ananth Kumar and Yeddyurappa being about political funding.

Surjewala said that no one — from Amit Shah to Ananth Kumar — has either denied the video or given defence even after 24 hours it surfaced.

“Based on the contents of the video, let the people of India see, judge and decide. They not only indulge in corruption but also make others indulge. To top of it, they brazenly speak about it publicly and get caught on video,” Surjewala said.

“The 125 crore Indians want to know where that money came from and how it was used. Both leaders agreed (in video) that they accepted the money. Is it not corruption? PM Modi talks about fighting black money. Is it not a case fit for invoking the Prevention of Corruption Act?”

Surjewala said the central government was misusing the Enforcement Directorate (ED), Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Income Tax Department against political rivals in anticipation of defeat in the assembly elections in the five states.

Pointing to the purported comment in the video ‘lighting a small spark to spread a wild fire’, Surjewala wondered: “If the BJP leadership is hatching a conspiracy to usurp power by any means and continue it up till the election?”

–IANS

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