New Delhi: BJP today demanded Chief
Minister Sheila Dikshit to sack the unidentified Cabinet
Minister who has been accused of trying to protect a leading
resort allegedly evading taxes to the tune of crores of
Terming the allegations as "very serious", BJP leader
V K Malhotra said continuation of the minister has become
"untenable" after Delhi Lokayukta has taken suo motu
cognisance of a media report about the case.
In a confidential report to top officials last month,
Delhi`s Commissioner of Trade and Tax Jalaj Shrivastava had
said that a Delhi Minister and an MP told him to "intervene"
in the alleged tax evasion case against Tivoli Garden Resort
hotel in South Delhi. Srivastava, however, did not name the
minister in his report.
Malhotra, asking the Chief Minister to disclose the
name of the Minister, said "obstructing a government official
while discharging his duty in such a case and pressing him to
desist form taking any action is a serious offence".
Delhi Lokayukta had yesterday took suo motu cognisance
of a media report about the allegations and directed
Srivastava to furnish all details including the name of the
Minister within seven days.
"The seriousness of the issue can be gauged form the
fact that the Lokayukta has taken cognisance of the report and
initiated proceedings. The Chief Minister must dismiss the
minister as his continuation has become untenable," Malhotra,
the leader of opposition in Delhi Assembly, said.
Delhi BJP president Vijendra Gupta on Monday had
claimed that it was PWD Minister Raj Kumar Chauhan who had
tried to influence the tax officials.
Chauhan, however, had dismissed the charges, saying he
may have made a request but it was for the authorities to
entertain it after examining the issue.
Tivoli CEO Rohit Gupta had rejected the tax evasion
allegations as "completely baseless" and said "it is a
law-abiding company and the (tax) survey was a regular one
conducted by the tax department."
The tax officials had conducted survey at various
resorts and banquet halls in the city in February as per an
instruction by Delhi Finance Minister A K Walia following
reports that they are indulging in large-scale tax evasion by
way of under-reporting their annual turnover.