New Delhi: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Nitin Gadkari, who is facing accusations of wrongdoing in business dealings, heaved a sigh of relief after his party backed him, while his parent organisation Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) distanced itself from the matter.
Making his party’s stand clear, BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said, “Nitin Gadkariji came to Delhi today and met veteran party leader LK Advani. After meeting the senior leader the party president met Lok Sabha Opposition Leader Sushma Swaraj and Rajya Sabha Opposition Leader Arun Jaitley along with general secretaries and party spokespersons.”
“Gadkariji apprised the party leaders about the issue and as he himself has offered for a probe, the BJP core committee has unanimously decided to stand firmly behind the party president.”
Javadekar also dismissed media reports of Gadkari’s resignation saying that all such reports are “useless and baseless.”
“Nitin Gadkari along with Sushma Swaraj will go to Himachal Pradesh for poll campaigning,” Javadejar further said.
BJP’s decision comes after RSS washed its hands of the BJP president over allegations of wrongdoing in his businesses.
Earlier, RSS general secretary Bhayyaji Joshi issued a statement, saying allegations about certain irregularities in the corporate affairs of some political leaders have caused a lot of consternation in the general public.
“RSS has nothing to do with any of the allegations. It is saddened by efforts to drag Sangh's name in this,” the RSS said in an emailed statement.
Further, while stressing on the need for a proper investigation in the Gadkari controversy the RSS said, “Illegal activity by anyone must be subjected to impartial probe and guilty punished.”
Noting that the allegations have been levelled by the media only and an authorised agency is yet to look into these, the RSS leader said: "That being the situation, it is unfortunate that the discourse on these allegations has turned more and more political."
Contending that the fight against corruption should be waged at a non-political and non-partisan level, Joshi said: "In the last few days, the media has been making allegations about certain irregularities in the corporate affairs of some political leaders. These allegations have caused a lot of consternation in the general public."
Gadkari is facing charges of impropriety over funding of Purti Power and Sugar Limited (PPSL) with media reports claiming that major investments and large loans to the company were made by Ideal Road Builders (IRB) group, which had won contracts between 1995 and 1999, when the BJP chief was PWD minister in Maharashtra.
The income tax department and the company affairs ministry have begun separate inquiries into Gadkari's firm and its financial dealings with 26 investor companies.
First Published: Friday, October 26, 2012, 20:16