Tuesday, November 6, 2012

RSS leader says law will take its own course against Gadkari


The Joint General Secretary of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), Dattatreya Hosabale, has said that the law will take its course on allegations of corruption levelled against Bharatiya Janata Party president Nitin Gadkari, and added that those who are found guilty, should be punished.
He was speaking on trhe sidelines of a three-day RSS Executive Council meeting here on Friday.
The RSS leadership is meeting to deliberate on various issues of national importance, including illegal migration from Bangladesh and security situation in the country.
Hosabale said they are not discussing issues related to BJP in this meeting.
"The General Secretary of RSS has already issued a statement that if there is any allegation against anybody, the due process of law should take place and those who are found guilty should be punished according to the law. The same stand continues and we are not going to discuss the BJP issues here," said Hosabale.
According to media reports, Gadkari was alleged of having business links with Ajay Sancheti, a lawmaker. Also, that Sancheti was given a special deal for a coalmine in the BJP-ruled central Madhya Pradesh state because of his association with Gadkari.
Recently, a coal scam had hit the country and the affair had washed out the just concluded monsoon session of parliament over the report of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) tabled in the upper house of Indian parliament.
The CAG had alleged under-priced sales of coalfields that may have cost the exchequer as much as $33 billion in revenues.
On this issue, the Bharatiya Janata Party had demanded the resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who handled the portfolio of Coal Ministry between 2006-2009, when a majority of the allocations were sanctioned.
Hosabale said that there was need to take stringent action against the corrupt irrespective of their political parties.
"Nitin Gadkari is a Sangha swayamsevak (volunteer) and like in the family, Nitin Gadkari also meets RSS office bearers and talk to people of RSS and such discussions take place. It is not a child's play anyhow, if something is happening in the society, we also discuss. But as far as the issues of corruption by anybody, whether it is Congress or any other person or BJP, we have been always been telling that the due process should take place, allegations should be answered properly and that we have already said," Hosabale said.
Hosabale added that the RSS has no soft corner for anybody and their yardstick for corruption is same for everyone.
"Why single out Gadkari about the land acquisition. There may be hundred others also. We are not going to discuss case wise or person wise. We are going to discuss the policy of the land acquisition. Who ever come within that will have to stand before the law. We are not giving any soft corner to anybody. We go by the policy and we have been stressing on that. Land acquisition or corruption or any other issue, we don't have different yardsticks. RSS views are that the country's interest and the nation's interest is supreme, public morality is supreme for us and accordingly we deal with things," said Hosabale.
Kejriwal had recently accused Gadkari of having a huge business empire in Maharashtra, and alleged that the former and NCP leader Ajit Pawar were hand-in-glove with each other in the irrigation scam.
Earlier Anjali Damania, close aide of anti-graft crusader cum politician Arvind Kejriwal had alleged that Gadkari had acquired 100 acre of farmers' land through dubious means for his private trust although he refuted these charges.
Gadkari was recently charged for illegally acquiring government land and for running a fake investment company.
A probe is being undertaken by the ministry of corporate affairs and income tax officials on whether the BJP party chief's vast financial empire is funded by ghost investors.
According to the report in the media, 18 companies which own 80 percent of the shares in Purti Group, owned by Gadkari, are not located on the addresses mentioned on the website of the company.
Managing director of Purti group, Sudhir Dive had out rightly dismissed corruption allegations against Gadkari, adding that he resigned from the company 14 months ago.
Hosabale said the country needs a change for the better.
"The people of this country want a change, change for the better and earlier it was the best that is what the RSS feels," said Hosabale.
Over the past few months, a string of recent multi-billion dollar corruption scandals have sparked Indian middle class anger over the federal government's abysmal track record in curbing graft.
Corruption is part of daily life in India - from bribes paid for something as simple as getting a gas connection, passport or avoiding a traffic violation, to multi-billion-dollar scandals.
Political parties are perceived to be the most corrupt institutions by Indians, according to Transparency International's Global Corruption Barometer in 2011.
A recent survey of upper house lawmakers by National Election Watch found their average net worth stood at around USD 2.3 million. Lawmakers earn around USD 900 a month. (ANI)