ED director replaced on behest of Swamy: Azad

December 10, 2015 05:00 am | Updated November 17, 2021 05:01 am IST - NEW DELHI

Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad, leading the Congress counter-charge against the ruling BJP, accused it of replacing the former director of Enforcement Directorate (ED), Rajan Katoch, in August, after he closed The National Herald case on the grounds of “insufficient evidence.”

Offering grounds for disrupting Parliament for three consecutive days, Mr.Azad alleged that Mr.Katoch was removed “on the behest” of senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy to ensure that his replacement will re-open the case.

In early August, Dr.Swamy, the main litigant in the case, had written two letters to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, accusing Mr.Katoch of showing “no interest in pursuing any matter connected with Congress party.”

By the end of August, the government replaced Mr.Katoch with Karnal Singh, who was quick to reopen the case.

For the Congress, the entire Katoch-Singh dynamics suggest that the BJP was conducting “political vendetta” against its leaders, forcing them to raise the issue in the parliament.

“When Nobody is willing to listen to us outside the parliament, then we have no option but to raise our vice inside the parliament,” Mr. Azad said.

Countering the BJP’s claim — that the Congress should not mix its judicial ordeals with the functioning of Parliament—Mr.Azad said the ruling party “facilitated the court ruling” after bringing in Mr.Singh as the new head of ED.

“He [Mr.Singh] was given a free rope to drag this matter further,” he said.

Mr.Azad accused the BJP government of “double standards” saying it took no action against its senior BJP leaders whom they accused of corruption in the Winter Session of Parliament.

“There are two laws in this country, one is for the ruling party and another is for the Opposition,” said Mr.Azad, adding that the BJP did not even file a single case against its accused leaders.

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