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HindustanTimes Thu,25 Dec 2014

Cong ridicules Advani's remarks backing Gadkari

PTI  New Delhi, October 24, 2012
First Published: 18:34 IST(24/10/2012) | Last Updated: 18:37 IST(24/10/2012)

Congress today took at dig at LK Advani for backing his party chief Nitin Gadkari in the face of allegations of dubious funding of his companies, saying it reflected BJP's "double standards" on "every issue" including corruption.

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The party also sought to draw parallel between the controversy surrounding Gadkari and the cash on camera scandal involving former BJP chief Bangaru Laxman.

"BJP has internalised double standards in its approach to each and every issue. When the BJP or its leaders are in the zone of questioning, the argument of political vendetta is conveniently trotted out but when it involves a non-BJP issue of personality, they shoot from the hip without responsibility and restraint," party spokesperson Manish Tewari said.

Insisting that there are questions on the BJP chief's role, he said "you cannot come out of the shadow of these questions by levelling allegations on others. There is only one way that the government probes the matter and you come out clean".

He was responding to the remarks of Advani lauding Gadkari's offer to face an inquiry into the allegations and saying it is a "fair and proper" response.

Advani said the allegations against Gadkari involving his company Purti Power and Sugar were about "standards of business and not misuse of power or corruption".

"I hope that the government inquiry will be fair and the government will not use its political hostility to the BJP to colour the inquiry," he said.

Another Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi also ridiculed Advani's contentions.

"I feel like laughing at this defence. The entire country has seen the allegations has not come from one section but from different sides. Even after that, if instead of giving explanation on the allegations, he (Advani) is congratulating Gadkari. People of the country will give a befitting response to it," he said.

In a statement laced with sarcasm, Alvi said the president of a party represents its ideology and as such BJP is identified with its chief's ideology.

"We remember the entire BJP was defending its former president Bangaru Laxman, when allegations were levelled against him.... It is their decision whom they want to keep as their party chief. We are not saying BJP should remove its chief or Gadkari should resign," he said.

Laxman had to quit as BJP chief after he was caught on camera allegedly taking a bribe of Rs. one lakh in a fictitious arms deal case 11 years ago and was sentenced to four years in jail by a Delhi court in April this year.


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