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Rediff.com  » News » Stab me, don't question my integrity: PC on Aircel-Maxis row

Stab me, don't question my integrity: PC on Aircel-Maxis row

May 14, 2012 15:19 IST
The Aircel-Maxis row on Monday led to fresh uproar in Rajya Sabha with the Opposition targeting with fresh allegations the son of Home Minister P Chidambaram, who denied any wrongdoing and said the company in question -- Advantage Consulting -- could be probed by the finance ministry.

Linking the controversial FIPB (Foreign Investment Promotion Board) clearance to Aircel-Maxis with business transactions of Ausbridge, a company earlier owned by Chidambaram's son, Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitley said the e-mail and web address of Ausbridge Holdings and Investments and Advantage Strategic Consulting, that had a shareholding in Aircel Maxis, were the same in 2006.

Chidamabram insisted that "no member of my family or I have any equity at any time indirectly or directly or have any investment in any telecom company...We have no connection with any telecom company or have any share in any telecom company."

At the same time, he downplayed the fresh charges that the e-mail and website address of Ausbridge and Advantage were the same in 2006, saying, "If they have the same website address, I am not aware...Even if they had a same website address, what is the relevance of that."

Chidambaram, who was the finance minister in 2006, said, "Nobody is saying that promoters of Advantage and Ausbridge do not know each other. Both are in Chennai and doing business ....young people are entitled to start legitimate businesses."

As the Opposition refused to accept his argument that the money transaction between the two companies was related to some consultancy service, Chidambaram said, "If you want to look into the book of account of Advantage consulting,...I will certainly convey to the finance minister...if you want to examine the transactions... I will be the happiest person ... let the finance ministry look into accounts of Advantage."

"Stab me but do not question my integrity," he told the members of the House. "It would be much simpler if somebody took a dagger and plunged it into my heart than questioning my integrity," he said.

The Opposition was not convinced at his reply and disrupted the House again when it met after lunch, leading to two adjournments.

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