The Congress called the Narendra Modi government’s decision to set-up an inter-ministerial committee to investigate donations to three organisations associated with it — Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust & Indira Gandhi Memorial Trust — as “wholly vicious and vengeful”.
Also read: Those who fight for truth cannot be intimidated: Rahul Gandhi after probe into NGOs linked to Congress
In a detailed statement, party media-incharge Randeep Surjewala said the Congress leadership will not be ‘intimidated’ by “blind witch hunt”. He accused the government of using these investigations to distract from the real questions on security and territorial integrity, mishandling of COVID-19 crisis and oncoming economic recession.
“A desperate Modi-Shah government has fallen back on a devious hounding of those exposing its ineptitude by ordering a wholly vicious and vengeful investigation of the Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust and the Indira Gandhi Memorial Trust,” Mr. Surjewala said.
We will answer all questions: Singhvi
At a press conference earlier in the day, Rajya Sabha MP and party spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said, “Rajiv Gandhi Foundation has nothing to clear. As law abiding persons, we are here to answer all the questions. Please ask all you want.”
Also read: MHA sets up panel to probe violation of legal provisions by three NGOs linked to Congress
Redirecting the attack on the BJP and the NDA government, the Congress demanded that the government should answer questions on “unexplained donations to the PM’s fund by Chinese entities and continued promotion of Chinese-owned businesses”.
Mr. Surjewala asked, “Will the Modi government hold an enquiry into the donations and the amounts received by the RSS from all sources including foreign sources, individuals, entities, organisations and governments?”
The Congress also pointed out that a similar enquiry must be ordered into the donations and the amounts received by right-leaning organisations such as the Vivekananda Foundation and the India Foundation. Or enquire into the source of funding and donors for the “Overseas Friends of BJP”, he said.
Also read: BJP refutes allegations of political vendetta in probe into funding of Rajiv Gandhi Foundation
500% increase in donations to BJP
The Congress pointed out that there has been nearly 500% increase in income and donations to the BJP from ₹570.86 crores (in 2015-2016) to ₹2,410 crores (in 2018-2019)?
“Our determination to hold the government accountable to the people and speak for the deprived, the underprivileged and the downtrodden will only get strengthened by these desperate actions of a government too petrified to answer its own people,” Mr. Surjewala said.
Congress treasurer Ahmed Patel said the BJP government is filled with hatred for the Gandhi family. “Entire focus of this government machinery is to humiliate & threaten the Congress president. But these things don’t deter us. History is witness — such tricks were tried even by the mighty Kauravas. The nation is watching,” Mr. Patel tweeted.