Immaterial for court ‘who is someone’s daughter-in-law’, says Prasad
The government rubbished on Tuesday the Congress’ charge of “political vendetta” against Sonia and Rahul Gandhi in the National Herald funds misuse case.india Updated: Dec 08, 2015 22:25 IST
The government rubbished on Tuesday the Congress’ charge of “political vendetta” against Sonia and Rahul Gandhi in the National Herald funds misuse case, while accusing the opposition party of trying to get “political coverage” through such statements.
Leaders of the ruling BJP distanced themselves from the matter, saying the government had nothing to do with the summons issued to the Gandhis by a city court and asked them to face legal proceedings instead of “disrupting Parliament”, that is slated to discuss key bills.
“There’s no political vendetta. A private complaint was lodged. The government had nothing to do with it. The high court has dismissed their case and asked them to go and face trial. Nobody in this country has immunity from law. They can challenge the orders in a higher court or face proceedings,” finance minister Arun Jaitley told reporters.
“Parliament does not decide guilt or innocence, nor does the media. India is not a banana republic where the media or Parliament will decide guilt or innocence in a private complaint.”
Jaitley said a private complaint can be filed by any citizen who feels there’s been a criminal violation and challenged the Congress to a discussion on the issue.
Sources said the government strategy is to try and isolate the Congress in the Opposition by insisting that the summons is a court order and Parliament should not be held hostage over this.
The Congress would realise that the more it highlights the vendetta charge, the more word would spread about the allegations against its two top leaders, they added.
The government’s floor managers are in touch with opposition leaders, trying to convince them that the Congress’ stand in Parliament has put some debate sought by other parties in serious jeopardy.
Union minister Jitendra Singh took on Rahul Gandhi for terming the developments “political vendetta”, saying the Congress MP’s remark amounted to “contempt” of court as it questions the independence and capability of the judiciary to make decisions.
“It is a not political vendetta but political sacrilege,” he said. “People who have ruled this country for 50-60 years are now questioning the ability of the judiciary to take decisions.”
Taking a jibe at Sonia Gandhi for her “I am daughter-in-law of Indira Gandhi” remark, telecom Minister Ravishankar Prasad told reporters that it was immaterial for a court “who is someone’s daughter-in-law or son-in-law”.
“Congress is talking about vendetta but not talking about the charges. Summons is a court decision and court’s interventions unearthed several cases of corruption in the past,” he said. “Let them explain if the coal scam, 2G scandal and CWG scam were also cases of political vendetta.”
Parliamentary affairs minister M Venkaiah Naidu too denied the charge, saying the government was steadfast in its focus on issues of development, repairing the economy, bringing back good administration and good governance.
By alleging political vendetta, “are they (the Congress) suggesting that the courts are now playing politics?” asked commerce minister Nirmala Sitharaman.