Mehsana (Gujarat): Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of taking kickbacks of Rs 65 crore from corporate houses as the Chief Minister of Gujarat and asked him to come clean on this.
“It is on the records of the Income Tax department that Modi received money from the Sahara Group nine times in six months (in 2013-14),” Gandhi told public rally in this north Gujarat town in the Prime Minister’s home district.
Rolling out dates when Modi allegedly received money from the Sahara Group (Rs 5 crore seven times and Rs 2.5 crore twice), the Congress leader said: “The Income Tax Department has this record from the Sahara Group’s diary for the last two-and-a-half years and has recommended an inquiry.
“Narendra Modiji, tell us whether this allegation is true or not, order an independent investigation into this and come clean. You have made the entire country stand in queues for days. Now speak the truth,” Gandhi said to applause by the huge crowd.
“This is not all. There is one more record of the Birla Group (with the Income Tax Department). Gujarat CM (to be paid) Rs 25 crore, Rs 12 crore paid, the rest?’ This is what is written there.
“Now, you tell the country Modiji if this is true. You should order an independent inquiry into these Income Tax records.”
According to Gandhi, the kickbacks became known after an Income Tax raid on November 22, 2014 on the Sahara groups when their records were seized, he said.
Gandhi said there were entries which showed that on October 30, 2013 Rs 2.50 crore was given to Modi, on November 12 Rs 5 crore, on November 27 Rs 2.5 crore and on November 29 another Rs 5 crore was handed over to him.
“These are all in records of the Income Tax department,” Gandhi said.
The Congress leader said between December 6, 2013 and February 22, 2014, Rs 25 crore was given to Modi.
In six months, the Sahara diary showed nine payments to Modi.
Gandhi went on: “You didn’t allow me to speak in Parliament. You were not ready to stand in front of us in Parliament. Don’t know what was the reason.”
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) denied the corruption allegations hurled at Modi.
“Our Prime Minister is as pure as the Ganga,” party leader and cabinet minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said in New Delhi.
The allegations levelled by Gandhi were earlier taken to the Supreme Court by noted advocate Prashant Bhushan. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has also been making the same allegations at public rallies.