Facing questioning by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in the multi-crore National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) scam that happened during her tenure as the Uttar Pradesh chief minister between 2007-12, BSP chief Mayawati on Tuesday accused the central government of “using the CBI” to carry out an act of “political vendetta” against her.
Questioning the timing of the decision, the BSP chief alleged the move was aimed to “demoralise her party” in the run up to the assembly elections in Bihar and to “divert attention from the Central government’s failure to fulfill the promises made to the people”.
Saying that the CBI was “free to investigate her”, Mayawati said she had “no connection with the NRHM scam”.
“But the BJP is trying to use the CBI against me four years after the scam surfaced. The saffron party must desist such tactics, as such attempts have cost them dearly earlier," Mayawati said at a press conference.
The NDA government rubbished the BSP leader’s charge, with IT and communications minister Ravi Shankar Prasad saying that the CBI worked on the “basis of proof”. “There is no need to draw any other conclusion from the agency’s move”, he added.
CBI Director Anil Sinha said the agency “will proceed as per the demand of the investigation”.
The agency had called Mayawati on Monday for examination on two specific issues related to NRHM scam -- bifurcation of Health and Family Welfare Department and appointment of district project officers considered key to the scam.
Meanwhile, the BSP supremo also attacked RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat for his comment for a review of quota regime and threatened a nationwide protest against the Narendra Modi government if it "toed" the line of the Sangh leader.
"If the central government attempts to tamper with the humanitarian provision of reservation as enshrined in the Constitution, the move will prove costly to the government," she said, while adding that the “RSS wanted to push the Dalits and downtrodden back into the dark ages of exploitation”.