BJP defends Joshi, calls him a `sage` politician

Last Updated: Sunday, March 25, 2012 - 00:24

New Delhi/Allahabad: BJP on Saturday defended
party veteran Murli Manohar Joshi against allegations by NRI
businessman Anshuman Mishra that he sought to meet officials
of companies involved in 2G spectrum scam, dismissing the
charges as "false" and "baseless".

It also described 78-year-old Joshi, who is the Chairman
of Parliament`s Public Accounts Committee(PAC) that also
probed the 2G scam, as a `sage` politician who is a symbol of
crusade against corruption.

Joshi himself rejected the charges saying they were an
outcome of the "frustration" he must be experiencing following
the denial of Rajya Sabha ticket from Jharkhand.

"My party has already given a befitting reply to the
slander of Anshuman Mishra who has been sulking ever since his
hopes of becoming a Rajya Sabha member were dashed.
Thereafter, he has been training his guns at one BJP
leader after another. His first target was Advani, then he
went after some other party leaders and now he has chosen me
for his diatribe", Joshi told reporters in Allahabad.

BJP spokesperson Tarun Vijay claimed that those who were
in the forefront of demanding action in corruption cases are
now being targeted because of ulterior motives.

"It is our fervent request to media not to give any
credence to such wild allegations which do not have an iota of
truth. Dr Joshi is a rishi (sage) politician, a symbol of
crusade against corruption," Vijay told reporters in Delhi.

Congress` Sanjay Nirupam said Joshi should step down as
PAC Chief even if there is an iota of truth in the
allegations.
Mishra, who withdrew his candidature for the Rajya Sabha
from Jharkhand after BJP withdrew its support to him, has
claimed to have introduced Joshi to senior executives of 2G
scam accused companies when the panel was probing the spectrum
case.

The NRI businessman has claimed that he was the BJP`s
fund-raiser for over a decade and said that Joshi called him
seeking funds for elections. Mishra also claimed to have
played a role in Joshi`s poll campaign in 2004 and 2009.

To a query, Joshi asserted he had "strongly opposed"
giving a Rajya Sabha ticket to Mishra when his opinion was
sought.

Anshuman alleged while talking to Star News that BJP
leader Arun Jaitley considered him as a threat since he is
also an "accomplished lawyer".

He asked whether Jaitley can deny that he spoke to him
several times ahead of 2009 Lok Sabha elections apparently to
seek help and alleged that the BJP leader "manipulates" the
media.

Targeting Yashwant Sinha again, Anshuman said he came
from another party.

The NRI businessman said all political parties take help
during elections and claimed he had also helped BJP with funds
from his friends.

PTI



First Published: Saturday, March 24, 2012 - 18:23

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