New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday sought a Supreme Court-monitored probe into charges that Prime Minister Narendra Modi took bribes from corporates as the Gujarat Chief Minister.
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader also asked Modi to resign until he was cleared of the charges — like veteran Bharatiya Janata Party leader L.K. Advani did in the 1990s after being linked to a Hawala scandal.
Kejriwal addressed the media shortly after Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi told a public rally in Gujarat that Modi took huge bribes from two corporate houses when he was the Chief Minister.
Kejriwal said he was the first to expose the bribery in the Delhi assembly on November 15 this year and had since been doing so at one public rally after another across the country.
He said the Supreme Court should take suo moto cognizance of the matter and set up a “fully independent” Special Investigation Team (SIT) with all powers to probe the charges against Modi.
Flashing what he claimed were Income Tax department papers, including four volumes of an Appraisal Report, Kejriwal said one of the corporate houses paid Modi Rs 40 crore in instalments.
Documents seized in the premises of another corporate house showed that a part of a Rs 25 crore bribe was given to Modi, he said.
Kejriwal said instead of having the allegations probed, the Prime Minister and his government had tried to suppress the cases.
He said the Appraisal Report had not been submitted to the Supreme Court and that he would get it done through leading lawyer Prashant Bhushan, who had earlier approached the apex court over the issue.
Pointing out that almost all companies keep two sets of accounts, he said this was the first time since India’s independence that the name of any Prime Minister had figured in writing in documents related to bribery.
“The nation has been betrayed,” Kejriwal said, referring to how Modi led the BJP to power in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls on the promise of fighting corruption by the Congress.
“But they turned out to be more corrupt than the Congress,” he said.
Kejriwal said since the CBI will not be able to probe the bribery charges, it was vital for the Supreme Court to step in.
“Advani showed high morals by resigning when his name was linked to a scandal,” the AAP leader said. “We hope Modi will follow the footsteps of his senior party leader and resign till his name is cleared.”
After Gandhi’s Gujarat speech, the BJP denied the allegation against Modi, saying the Prime Minister was “as pure as the Ganga” river.
Kejriwal also chided Gandhi for taking so long to take up an issue he had been flagging for months. “Rahul Gandhi had no choice but to do it.”