Sonia not figuring in Bofors scam intriguing: RSS
New Delhi: RSS has said it is intriguing that Congress President Sonia Gandhi has not figured in the Bofors scam though Italian businessman Ottavio Quattrocchi was close to her even as the Sangh founthead charged successive governments with looking the other way in the scandal.
The editorial of RSS mouthpiece Organiser states that Sonia Gandhi is the "missing name" in the Bofors corruption case as if she must not be named.
"An intriguing aspect of the Bofors discussions today is that the name of Sonia Gandhi who brought Quattrocchi into the Gandhi family is not being mentioned at all. Like the character in JK Rowling's Harry Potter series, it appears she is the one who must not be named," the article says.
It points out that the Congress President has been spared despite her husband Rajiv Gandhi being named in the scam and Arun Nehru being dragged in too.
Interestingly, RSS also alleges that successive governments have not made efforts to bring out the truth in the Bofors case. Though it has not named the erstwhile NDA government which was in power from 1998-2004, the reference includes this period as well.
Quoting Bofors "Deep Throat" Swedish Police Chief Sten Lindstrom, RSS said, "The successive governments of India knew who the culprits were and yet chose to look the other way."
The editorial further states that several non-Congress governments came to power- including the one led by VP Singh who had vowed to bring the guilty to book within 100 days of becoming Prime Minister- but nothing much was done.
It further states that Lindstrom has insisted that several politicians visited Sweden and sought information and promised to help investigations when they came to power, only to forget their promises later.
The RSS mouthpiece also appears to take a soft line on
Rajiv Gandhi but says there was a cover-up plan to protect Quattrocchi.
"While Lindstrom said there was no direct evidence to link Rajiv Gandhi to the bribe money, in the same breath, he revealed the highly planned and executed cover-up plan to protect the name of Quattrocchi, a close friend of Rajiv through his wife Sonia, who is Quattrocchi's compatriot," the editorial said.
It insists that though CBI has had 16 directors since the Bofors scam, none of them has ever spoken about the case.
RSS has also alleged that in India cases against politicians are never pursued to their logical conclusion. "In that, our community of politicians stand together in a strong bond," the article states.
The mouthpiece has also raised certain pertinent questions about the case, namely, who ordered the cover-up to protect some persons, who helped Quattrocchi leave the country, why did the Italian businessman- a novice in arms deals- go with the Prime Minister to Sweden and how did he get the introductions.
It maintains that Quattrocchi's employer Snam Progetti, an Italian company, get 60 deals.
"What was the source and strength of his power?" the story says.
RSS has also criticised the media for being selective and partial in publishing the documents related to the case. "Most curiously, the government agency supplied a list of names to be 'planted' as suspects in the Bofors kickback scandal," the editorial said.