New Delhi: The Congress on Friday demanded that Union Minister Nitin Gadkari step down till a judicial probe goes into alleged financial wrongdoings highlighted by CAG in connection with Purti, saying the company was founded by him and his family had "close links" with it.
Party spokesman Abhishek Singhvi made the demand close on the heels of an audit report tabled in Parliament in which the Comptroller and Auditor-General (CAG) named Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari as one of the "promoters and/or directors" of Purti.
The company, the CAG held, was sanctioned a loan of Rs 84.12 crore by the Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA) in "violation of guidelines".
Singhvi alleged that Gadkari, who had in an earlier case named his driver as a Director in his Purti Group of companies, to escape responsibility has been "indicted" by the CAG in its report tabled in Parliament on Thursday.
The CAG held that IREDA could recover only Rs. 71.35 crore out of Rs. 84.12 crore recoverable from the borrower, resulting in a sacrifice of Rs. 12.77 crore, the report said. The contentions of the management of Purti for doing so were untenable, it added. Besides, the auditor maintained that Purti did not comply with the conditions for interest subsidy.
"The borrower violated the terms and conditions for subsidy schemes," the report said. Dubbing the findings of the CAG as a "serious matter", Singhvi alleged that Purti took the loan by making false representation and has "violated every rule in the rulebook".
Taking a dig at the Narendra Modi dispensation, he said it was a "lootput ki sarkar" (government of loot) and not 'sujh-bujhki sarkar" (wise government) and the CAG findings in Purti case were an example.
Singhvi demanded that Gadkari step down as Union Minister till a judicial probe goes into the whole issue and comes out with a report.