A section of Congress leaders, including block presidents and other office-bearers from Ludhiana, on Monday sought a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the assets of All India Congress Committee (AICC) secretary Kishori Lal Sharma, said to be a close aide of Congress president Sonia Gandhi.
The party leaders also urged Gandhi to maintain distance from Sharma, alleging that he was exploiting his perceived proximity to her family and dictating terms to the party and its state unit president Partap Singh Bajwa.
In a statement issued on Monday, Congress block president Baljinder Singh Bunty said they had submitted a petition to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union home minister Rajnath Singh, referring to the properties owned by Sharma in Ludhiana and other parts of the country. "It needs to be probed and investigated by an independent agency such as the CBI as to what is the source of the huge wealth Kishori Lal Sharma has acquired over these years without doing any job or business," they said in the letter.
In a separate letter to Gandhi, the block presidents and office-bearers alleged that Sharma was 'remote-controlling' the Congress from Delhi and antagonising party workers.
The block presidents alleged that Bajwa was playing second fiddle to Sharma.
The letters have been signed by Bunty, Palwinder Singh Taggar and Satwinder Singh Jawaddi.
When contacted, Sharma said he had been associated with the Gandhi family for the past three decades.
"The Gandhi family would not have spared me had I been corrupt. Moreover, I am attached with SPG (Special Protection Group) protectees, hence I undergo regular checks and there is no chance of getting away with corrupt practices." Sharma claimed that he had nothing to do with Punjab as he was the Congress in-charge for Bihar.