Wednesday, December 23, 2015

DDCA Row: Would Modi Sacrifice Jaitley? you never know!

DDCA Row: In PM Modi's remark, Opposition sees a hint for Arun Jaitley to quit Cabinet

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Palash Biswas

DDCA, DDCA case, DDCA controversy, arun jaitley, kirti azad, gandhi, arun jailey resign, advani resign, jaitley quit cabinet, BJP, DDCA newsArun Jaitley leaves court after filing a defamation case against Kejriwal, in New Delhi Monday. (Source: AP)

We all know all about Shehbag records of fast triple twin century and Gambhir`s role in world cup win,Ishant`s fast bowling abroad and Virat Kohli replacing Sachin so fast in Indian Cricket.Once the Humpty Dumpty tumbles down,all the Kalki king`s men and women might not make it stand and thus,the defence of Dow Chemicals look almost shattered!

As Prime Minister Narendra Modi drew a parallel between LK Advani and Arun Jaitley, who is now facing charges in the DDCA affair, opposition leaders wondered if the Finance Minister will also resign like party veteran did in the Hawala case!

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal spoke in the Delhi Assembly after defamation lawsuits were filed against him and other AAP leaders by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley after the party alleged corruption in the Delhi cricket body which Mr Jaitley headed for 13 years. He attacked Narendra Modi-led BJP government over not extending any cooperation or support for the development of state.Kejriwal dares to challenge the rise of a spectacular Chaiwala to the status of a hi fi Jhinchak suited booted NRI Saheb having Luxury Jet to fly anytime anywhere while earning less than a Babu!

Nevertheless,it is quite a miserable and most loud  scenario that the PM best known for his 56 inch sina keeps silence as far as Kejriwal Challenge is concerned, as far as the lost credit as well as mandate is concerned,as far as the responsibility of the Indian Prime Minister to the Indian people concerned!

Meanwhile,the Delhi Assembly on Tuesday passed a resolution to set up a Commission of Inquiry over the alleged irregularities in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) issue.

Meanwhile, Congress on Tuesday continued to press for the resignation of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Rajya Sabha over alleged irregularities in Delhi cricket body DDCA for the second day, forcing two adjournments before noon.

The row over alleged financial bungling in Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) resonated in Parliament today with BJP member Kirti Azad embarrassing the ruling side by demanding time-bound Special Investigation Team (SIT) probe!

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday filed a defamation suit against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and sought Rs.10 crore in damages for accusing him of corruption when he headed theDDCA.

Jaitley's complaint collates online content - tweets, Facebook posts and press statements made by the AAP leaders alleging corruption in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA). Jaitley was DDCA president till December 2013.Jaitley's suit came in the backdrop of an unrelenting attack on him by Kejriwal and other AAP leaders alleging irregularities and financial bungling in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA).

The Prime Minister is no way to escape as the Apple Cart turns against him.CBI Raid is paid back by Kejriwal and the PM stands rather helpless,lost his branded fire!

Why?It is turning out to be a bitter battle between Bharatiya Janata Party MP Kirti Azad and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley over the allegations of corruption into the affairs of the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA).

However,the BJP said due to political bitterness Congress was undermining the report of an inquiry done during its own government's time noting that the report had found nothing against Jaitley when he headed the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA).

Hence,Indian Express reports:

Hours after Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley would come through with flying colours, like L K Advani did after the hawala case in the 1990s, Congress and the Left pointed out that Advani had resigned when the scam surfaced. CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury said the Prime Minister had given a hint to Jaitley that "he should resign, get himself cleared and come back".

"Today the Prime Minister said that Jaitley will come out of this like L K Advani in the Jain hawala case. I want to remind Jaitley that Advani had then resigned and had fought elections only after he got a clean chit from the Supreme Court. So is the Prime Minister advising Jaitley that he should also resign like Advani and not come back till he gets cleared," said Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad.

Yechury said, "If the Prime Minister is drawing a parallel between Jaitley and Advani in the hawala case, I do not know whether the Prime Minister is giving a hint to Jaitley that he should also resign, get cleared like Advani and come back. I read the Prime Minister's statement in this manner. That this is the Prime Minister's signal to Jaitley. Unfortunately… I am sure Jaitley may be missing the point."

The Congress stepped up its attack on Jaitley, riding on BJP MP Kirti Azad's statements, within and outside Parliament. The party fielded Ghulam Nabi Azad and Anand Sharma to take on the Finance Minister. The Leader of the Opposition said not even one BJP MP or minister stood up and contradicted what Kirti Azad said in Lok Sabha, which meant they were in agreement with what he had said.

He also raked up Jaitley's opposition to inclusion of the BCCI in the ambit of RTI when he was the Leader of the Opposition, and asked whether it was because sports bodies are riddled with scams. He referred to a 2011 Supreme Court verdict, which said "office-bearers of cricket association are public servants and fall within the Prevention of Corruption Act".

"It is a known fact that Arun Jaitley has in the past been a crusader for accountability and repeatedly invoked the dictum that 'Caesar's wife must be above suspicion'. The recent developments and revelations, therefore, make it imperative that he lives by the dictum and does not make untenable arguments that this case be treated as an exception to the established principles of accountability in public life," he said.

"One thing should be clear that there is no denial either by Jaitley, the BJP, or the government that when these alleged acts of omission and commission were there — corruption, fraud, nepotism, creation of fictitious companies, payment to non-existent companies — the person who was presiding over the DDCA's affairs was Jaitley."

The latest update!

DDCA row: Aam Aadmi Party protests against Arun Jaitley, demands resignation

TV report: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Wednesday escalated protest against Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley demanding his resignation over the alleged irregularities in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA).

The protest march to Jaitley's residence was stopped by the police at Tughlaq Road here.

The protestors were seen holding placards and shouting slogans demanding Jaitley's resignation.

Meanwhile, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore said Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal talked about ushering in politics of no corruption, and yet he kept a corrupt man close.

"Instead of answering on that, Kejriwal went on a counter attack of abusive language. DDCA has already been investigated, nothing was found. Yet Kejriwal abused not only Jaitley ji but his entire family," he said.

Earlier, Jaitley had filed a criminal defamation complaint against Arvind Kejriwal and five other leaders of AAP for allegedly defaming him in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) controversy before a Delhi court, which took cognizance on his plea.

Jaitley's action comes in the backdrop of attacks on him by Kejriwal and other AAP leaders over alleged irregularities and financial bunglings in Delhi's cricket body, DDCA, of which he was the president for about 13 years till 2013.

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Defamation case should've been against me: Kirti Azad on DDCA row

BJP MP and former cricketer Kirti Azad with veteran cricketer Bishan Singh Bedi during a press conference regarding DDCA in New Delhi on Sunday. In an interview to a news agency on Monday, Azad said the defamation suit in the DDCA corruption issue should have been filed against him instead of Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal.

News update:Former cricketer and BJP MP Kirti Azad on Monday said that the defamation case in the DDCA corruption case should have been filed against him instead of Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal since it was him who for years has alleged corruption in Delhi's cricket board.

"I have been raising the issue of corruption in DDCA since long," the former India player told IANS, hours after Jaitley filed the case against Kejriwal in the Delhi high court and sought Rs 10 crore in damages.

"This was my issue which was hijacked by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the Congress for political gains. In fact, they have raised this issue on the basis of my letters.

"So the defamation case should have been filed against me. It is unfortunate that the defamation case was not filed against me," Azad said.

Jaitley's move came a day after Azad, elected to the Lok Sabha from Darbhanga in Bihar, held a press conference and alleged massive corruption in the affairs of the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA). Jaitley had headed the DDCA for many years.

Immediately after Azad's Sunday press conference, the AAP again demanded Jaitley's resignation from the cabinet. Kejriwal also announced that he would set up a Commission of Inquiry to probe the DDCA affairs.

Asked if he feared action by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for speaking against a fellow party leader, Azad reiterated that his fight was against corruption and not against any individual or party.

"What wrong I have done? I am fighting against corruption and my fight is not against any individual or any party.

"Have I spoken a single word against my party or any individual? I have never protested against the policies of the government.

"In fact, what I have done is on the lines of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is against corruption. His government is following the mantra of zero tolerance towards corruption."

Azad went on: "I respect Arun Jaitleyji a lot. He is my leader. I am not against any individual."

The MP clarified why he wanted a time-bound probe into the matter by a Special Investigation Team (SIT).

"The opposition parties always cry foul whenever any matter is referred to the CBI. So if the matter is given to the CBI, they will raise fingers on its outcome.

"So I have demanded a SIT probe which should be under the supervision of a high court."

The cricketer-turned-politician vowed to pursue the DDCA case -- which he has been raising for eight long years -- till its "final conclusion".

Azad denied that he was summoned by BJP president Amit Shah and asked not to campaign against Jaitley.

"I was not summoned by Amit Shahji. I met him over a cup of tea. Obviously we discussed the issue of corruption in the DDCA."

But he admitted that Shah did tell him to not to address any press conference on the issue.

Azad said the probe into the DDCA by the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO), done under the previous Congress-led UPA regime, was of a civil nature.

He said the CBI was probing the evasion of entertainment tax due to the sale of underpriced tickets for elite hospitality boxes at the Ferozeshah Kotla Ground here.

The BJP MP alleged that the DDCA gave out contracts to fake companies, paying them crores of rupees in cash, and had fudged the audit of accounts.

Media reports: In a strong show of support for Arun Jaitley, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said the finance minister will come through "with flying colours" against charges of corruption levelled against him by the Opposition in the same way LK Advani did in the Hawala case. According to party sources, Modi described Jaitley to be as pure as Advani. Modi reportedly said the allegations against Jaitley are a "wrong and manufactured strategy" of the Congress to fix the "good and noble" ministers of the BJP.

Batting for Jaitley, accused by Congress and AAP of financial irregularities in Delhi cricket body when he headed it, Modi hit out at Congress at BJP's parliamentary party meeting for levelling "wrong and manufactured" allegations to "defame" the government.

At the parliamentary party, no reference was made to similar charges made by BJP MP Kirti Azad, who was not present in the meeting on Tuesday.

Briefing reporters after the meeting, Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu quoted Modi as having said that BJP leaders like Sushma Swaraj, Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Vasundhara Raje had similarly faced such "wrong" charges from Congress earlier.

"The prime minister gave the example of LK Advani. The government at that time tried to implicate him in the Hawala case. Advani came through with flying colours and the strategy of Congress boomeranged. Same thing is going to happen regarding allegations against Jaitley... Congress is inventing issue to defame the government," Naidu said.

Advani and a number of other leaders were investigated by CBI during the Congress government headed by PV Narasimha Rao. Advani had resigned from Lok Sabha in 1996 after allegations were levelled against him in the Hawala case. The case, however, later collapsed due to lack of evidence.

BJP has rallied around Jaitley as Congress and AAP have tried to corner him over the issue and demanded his resignation. Party chief Amit Shah issued a strong statement in his support on Monday.

A number of union ministers had also joined Jaitley, a key party strategist, in a court where he had filed defamation cases against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and five other AAP leaders.

Aiming to take the battle to the Opposition, BJP MPs of the Lok Sabha will be spending one night in each Assembly constituency in their seat to spread awareness about the "good work" being done by the Modi government and the Opposition's campaign to "defame" it. This will be done in January, Naidu said.

BJP's Lok Sabha MPs will do a similar reach-out exercise in February in a neighbouring constituency, Naidu said, adding that party's Rajya Sabha members will do it in constituencies where the party had lost in the general elections of 2014.

The entire country will be covered by this, Naidu said.

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