The Aam Aadmi Party on Friday asked “five specific” questions to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley relating to its allegations of corruption in Delhi’s cricket body Delhi & District Cricket Association under his watch and accused him of giving “vague” response to the charges.
Calling Jaitley a “master of half truth and beautiful lies”, AAP leader Ashutosh made certain fresh allegations against the finance minister and said his comments that there was no specific charges against him was “misleading”.
Jaitley has strongly rejected the allegations calling them a propaganda technique of Kejriwal to deflect attention when he himself was in the “dock” following a Central Bureau of Investigation raid in Delhi Secretariat.
Addressing a press conference, Ashutosh accused DDCA of allowing private firm 21st Century to sub-lease 10 corporate boxes at Feroz Shah Kotla stadium and claimed the firm owned by a friend of Jaitley was extended financial benefit to the tune of over Rs 5 crore for the deal.
The AAP leader asked Jaitley to clarify who were members of the 21st Century and whether it had any of his kin.
The AAP leader also accused Jaitley of putting pressure on ONGC to give an amount of Rs 5 crore to Hockey India and sought to know what was the reason behind it.
Alleging huge financial bungling in reconstruction of the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium, the AAP leader said although public sector entity EPIL was paid Rs 57 crore for the project the remaining Rs 57 crore out of the total expenditure of Rs 114 crore was distributed among nine companies.
“The registered address, e-mail and directors of these companies were same. Did Jaitley know about these companies and is it not corruption,” asked the AAP leader.
On Jaitley’s comments that the SFIO report had absolved him, Ashutosh said the finance minister hid the fact that punishment for offences mentioned by the central agency included imprisonment.
“We had raised specific questions and Jaitley gave vague answers. That is why we are coming out with five specific questions for him,” AAP leader Sanjay Singh said.
The AAP leaders also asked Jaitley to tell about his relationship with Hockey India chief Narendra Batra.
They said the Delhi government last month had set up committee to probe irregularities in DDCA after getting a communication in this regard from Union sports ministry. They said the home ministry had communicated to the sports ministry about irregularities in DDCA following which it wrote to the Delhi government.
Following a CBI raid in Delhi Secretariat in connection with charges against Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s Principal Secretary Rajender Kumar, AAP has been claiming that the Central agency carried out the searches to target the AAP chief and was looking for a file relating to graft in DDCA.
Since then, the party has been demanding resignation of Jaitley from the Union cabinet.
Image: AAP's Ashutosh, Raghav Chadha, Kumar Vishwas during the press conference. Photograph: Vijay Kumar Joshi/PTI