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Congress seeks Lokpal probe into 'Yeddyurappa Diaries'

Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala addressing the media at the party headquarters in New Delhi on Friday.

Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala addressing the media at the party headquarters in New Delhi on Friday.   | Photo Credit: R.V. Moorthy

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A media report alleged that Yeddyurappa paid ₹1,800 crore to some top BJP leaders.

Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Friday accused senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders of being “corrupt” after a media report claimed that former Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa had allegedly paid bribes to the tune of ₹1,800 crore to the BJP’s top leadership.

Papers forged: Shah

BJP national president Amit Shah as well as Karnataka party chief Yeddyurappa accused the Congress of resorting to “fake issues” and “forged documents.”

“All ‘chowkidars’ (watchmen) of the BJP are thieves NoMo Arun Jaitley Rajnath Singh,” Mr. Gandhi tweeted in Hindi and tagged the news report by the Caravan magazine that detailed alleged pay-offs by Mr. Yeddyurappa to senior leaders and the party’s central election committee.

The Congress officially demanded an investigation into the diary by the newly appointed Lokpal to confirm whether ‘bribes’ were actually paid.

 

Congress communication chief Randeep Singh Surjewala said Prime Minister Narendra Modi should clarify whether the contents of the diary — listing bribes to the tune of ₹1,800 crore to top BJP leaders — were correct.

Mr. Surjewala said each person named in the diary should come forward and submit to an investigation.

“I think this is a fit case to be investigated by the newly appointed Lokpal as the first test case. Now, the ball lies in the Prime Minister’s court to prove if the chowkidar is a thief or if the chowkidar is ready for a probe,” he added.

He alleged that the Income Tax Department had the diaries since 2017 but it did not take action on them. He also asked whether or not a note regarding this was put up before the then I-T Department chief but was rejected.

“The authenticity of this diary which is supposed to be signed on each page by B.S. Yeddyuruppa, prima-facie reflecting corruption of ₹1800 crore up to the top notch echelons of BJP leadership, has to be investigated,” he said.

Terming it as a closed chapter, Mr. Yeddyurappa, who is the BJP president for Karnataka, claimed that the allegation was inquired into by the Income Tax Department and it was found that the documents were ‘fake.’

“All issues raised by the Congress about alleged payment of crores of rupees have already been inquired into and it was found that the documents are fake. IT department officials have already probed the issue to find that the documents and signatures and handwritten notes are forged ones. The issue is a closed chapter,” Mr. Yeddyuruppa said and accused the Congress of raking it up now for the Lok Sabha elections.

The BJP chief accused the Congress of forgery. “The Congress campaign is in a shambles. Now even forgery can’t save them. A few loose sheets given by a Congress Minister is only as credible and reliable as Rahul Gandhi’s leadership skills,” he said on Twitter. Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the Congress was now ‘desperate’ and that it had “lost its balance.”

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Printable version | Dec 16, 2019 2:59:31 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/congress-dares-government-to-order-lokpal-investigation-into-yeddyurappa-diaries/article26607872.ece

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