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  5. Won't be threatened by raids, says Congress' Ahmed Patel; I-T raids political operation: Nath's OSD

Won't be threatened by raids, says Congress' Ahmed Patel; I-T raids political operation: Nath's OSD

Ahmed Patel said the use of Income Tax department to "target" BJP's political opponents ahead of Lok Sabha polls shows the "desperation" in the ruling party.

India TV Politics Desk Edited by: India TV Politics Desk New Delhi Updated on: April 10, 2019 7:06 IST
Ahmed Patel
Image Source : PTI/FILE

Ahmed Patel

Income Tax officials continued to search on Tuesday, for the third day, premises of associates of Kamal Nath. The officials were searching residences and offices of Ashwini Sharma, Manager of an NGO, his close aide Prateek Joshi, and Chief Minister's officer on special duty (OSD) Praveen Kakkar. Kakker was also interrogated till late Monday.

They claimed to have unearthed details of transactions involving Rs 281 crore linked to businessmen, politicians and bureaucrats.

Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel said on Tuesday he will not be cowed down by raids carried out by Income Tax authorities against party leaders and workers and alleged the searches were aimed at stopping opposition leaders from contesting the Lok Sabha election.

Patel said the use of Income Tax department to "target" BJP's political opponents ahead of Lok Sabha polls shows the "desperation" in the ruling party.

He said people will give a befitting reply to BJP in the elections beginning on April 11.

This election will make it clear to the BJP whether money power can win elections, he told reporters.

He said he and others have complained to the Election Commission against the raids aimed at "targeting the political opponents of BJP".

"We do not fear anyone. Congress party has always maintained transparency," he stressed, alleging that the raids were a "well-thought out conspiracy" to taint the Congress.

"I do not fear anyone and I have not committed any theft. Attack is the best defence and those who have committed theft themselves are attacking others," he claimed.

Modi calls MP CM 'Bhrasht Nath'

Amid the income-tax raids on close aides of Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday called him "Bhrasht Nath" and said if "scams" were surfacing the people behind them should also be brought into open.

Modi's jibe at Kamal Nath came during an interview to a news channel. He also said cases, like National Herald and fodder scam, happened during the Congress rule.

"Bhrasht Nath could say anything, but it doesn't matter. Action needs to be taken on scams and corruption," Modi said referring to recent raids in Madhya Pradesh. "Scams were put in cold storage. We thought they should be probed. If the scams are surfacing, the people behind them should also brought forward," the Prime Minister said.

I-T raids a political operation: Nath's OSD Praveen Kakkar

Nath's Officer on Special Duty (OSD) Praveen Kakkar, on Tuesday, termed the income-tax raids at his residence and other places a "political operation".

He accused the officials of breaking into his house at 3.30 a.m. on Sunday. However, he denied any torture by officials.

Kakkar, interrogated by the IT team till late Monday, said the questioning continued for 46 hours. "They searched all the rooms and lockers, but could not find any objectionable document. At other places too, no objectionable material was found," he said.

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(With inputs from agencies)

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