Tejashwi cannot defend 26 properties to his name at age 26, says Modi | india news | Hindustan Times
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Tejashwi cannot defend 26 properties to his name at age 26, says Modi

Modi, who has been going hammer and tongs at Lalu & family for over a hundred days, claimed on Tuesday, that Tejashwi became the owner of 13 immovable assets while he was still a minor, and 13 properties when he was a full grown adult

india Updated: Jul 18, 2017 23:25 IST
Binod Dubey
Binod Dubey
Hindustan Times, Patna
Tejashwi,Sushil Modi,Bihar
Sushil Kumar Modi addressing a press conference in Patna on Tuesday. (A P Dube / HT)

PATNA

At 26,Bihar deputy chief minister Tejashwi Prasad Yadav owns as many property as his age — all hidden from public gaze.

That’s what senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi claimed on Tuesday with ‘documented proof’, even as the JD(U) and the RJD attempted a political compromise after taking the Grand Alliance to the edge of a political precipice over CBI charges against the deputy CM, said to be a prime beneficiary of a hotel for land deal going back to the days when his father and RJD chief was railway minister.

Post the CBI FIR, which involves Tejashwi, 26, directly to the ownership of a mall on the outskirts of Patna — said to be a sweetener ‘paid’ by the hotel owners to Lalu Prasad for awarding rights to two railway hotels — the fresh allegations came as a counter to the compromise that the RJD dictated by directing Tejashwi to meet chief minister and explain his stand. The JD(U) had demanded that Tejashwi come clean, or resign even as the RJD had maintained that he had ‘done no wrong’ and ‘he would not’.

However, the fresh BJP charges, earlier in the day, added to the worries and may have prompted the RJD’s climbdown to some extent.

Modi, who has been going hammer and tongs at Lalu & family for over a hundred days, claimed on Tuesday, that Tejashwi became the owner of 13 immovable assets while he was still a minor, and 13 properties when he was a full grown adult.

“I have proof that while the first 13 properties were transferred in his name when he was not yet 13, the rest came when had already grown a ‘moustache and beard’, which makes him culpable,” Modi said.

Modi’s refernce to the ‘moustache and beard’ was an answer to Tejashwi, who had tried to stave off media queries last week on the issue of the JD(U)’s call for his resignation, saying, “Can a boy who was yet to sport a moustache be involved in a scam?”

Handing over a list of the assets acquired by the deputy CM to the media, Modi dared Tejashwi to make it public as to how he came to be owner of the properties, while he was not into any known business.

Contesting the assertion by Tejashwi that BJP was implicating him for his recent troubles, Modi said Tejashwi was fully adult (23 years old), when he became the owner of Delight Marketing Private Ltd (DMPL) with its assets.

“Not only that, Tejashwi Prasad Yadav was deputy chief minister of Bihar when he signed an agreement on May 5, 2016 with a private company to develop a mall on three acres of land owned by the DMPL at Patna’s Saguna Mor,” he added.

“In fact, Tejashwi became the owner of shell companies like DMPL, AB Exports and AK Infosystem through which he acquired properties in Patna and Delhi, while he was an adult and had attained the age of 23,” said Modi, while talking to mediapersons on the sidelines of his “ Janata Durbar” here on Tuesday.

The BJP leader said, of the 26 properties Tejashwi owned, 13 were acquired through shell companies, while the rest he got through registration. “Even if he was a minor, he could have said no to the gifts (immoveable properties), which were given to him,” said Modi, who had worked as deputy chief minister in the NDA government led by chief minister Nitish Kumar.

Modi said of the 26 properties, the income-tax department has declared 13 assets as ‘benami’ and attached them provisionally. “The CBI has lodged an FIR against Tejashwi and seven others under various sections of the IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988,” he said, adding that the case must not be taken lightly as the central agency files an FIR only after ascertaining that the complaints were prima facie true.

He hoped that in view of the serious nature of offences committed by his deputy, CM Nitish Kumar would definitely seek resignation from him or expel him from his cabinet. “The chief minister has set a benchmark on the issue of corruption and he, it is hoped, would not compromise with his principles,” Modi said, adding, “I also appeal to the deputy CM to resign before he is expelled from the cabinet.”

He reiterated that owing to the political impasse caused by Tejashwi’s refusal to resign, Bihar’s governance has been hard hit and the situation would further worsen if the deadlock continues.

When asked why the Narendra Modi government was not taking action against the cases of benami property elsewhere in the country, the senior opposition leader said the central government had already identified 400 benami assets across the nations and initiated action against the owners.

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Modi, who has been going hammer and tongs at Lalu & family for over a hundred days, claimed on Tuesday, that Tejashwi became the owner of 13 immovable assets while he was still a minor, and 13 properties when he was a full grown adult

The fresh BJP charges, earlier in the day, added to the worries and may have prompted the RJD’s climbdown to some extent