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Vadra land deals rock Parliament, BJP demands SIT probe
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 13
The alleged dubious land deals of Robert Vadra, son-in-law of UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, rocked Parliament today. While a vociferous Opposition, led by the BJP, insisted on being allowed to raise the issue, the Congress rejected the argument on the ground that it was a state subject and Vadra a private individual.

In the Lok Sabha, Yashwant Sinha, a former Finance Minister, suggested setting up of a Supreme Court-monitored special investigation team (SIT) to examine Vadra’s land deals across Congress-ruled states like Delhi, Haryana and Rajasthan. Sinha, said: “Our demand is that the SIT, which should be a multi-disciplinary authority to examine the alleged violation of the banking law, company law and income-tax law through these land deals, be set up and the probe monitored by the Supreme Court.”

Sinha said, “Though there are several business schools which teach models of making money, there is one highly connected person who did not go to any such school but has given a model where no investment is made but windfall gains of thousands of crores are made.” Although Sinha did not take any name, the statement triggered instant protests from Congress members.

Sanjay Nirupam rushed to the Well protesting against the BJP charge. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath and his deputy Rajeev Shukla, both seated in the front row, were also on their feet. BJP members countered them from their seats.

Later, in response to BJP members’ slogan: ‘‘Congress ka haath damaad ji ke saath”, Congress MPs responded with slogan “Congress ka haath garib ke saath”.

Similar scenes were witnessed in the Rajya Sabha before lunch.

After a meeting of the BJP parliamentary party, Deputy Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ravishankar Prasad rejected the Congress contention that the matter was state-related. “It is not a state subject. This is an issue of a serious bank fraud. It is a case of enrichment through the use of authority by collusion, of a fraudulent bank document and banking documents’ manipulation clearly becomes a national subject. How the documents of a nationalised bank were used for land transfer. How the entire government machinery was misused to benefit a person related to an important personality. We will like to raise it and will demand that we are allowed to raise the issue in both Houses and that the government must promise a fair probe,” Prasad told reporters.

Even as the BJP upped the ante, the BSP and the SP, which support the UPA from outside, wondered how Congress president Sonia Gandhi could be held responsible for the alleged wrongdoings of her son-in-law. “I would like to say if Sonia Gandhi is held responsible for it, our party does not agree with it. If someone does something wrong, his or her relations should not be punished. On the allegations against Robert Vadra, how can Sonia Gandhi be held responsible,” BSP chief Mayawati told reporters here.

SP leader Naresh Aggarwal felt the BJP was politicising the issue which was a state matter and should be handled at that level only. Gurudas Dasgupta of the CPI said: “It is not just the question of the son-in-law. There are many more people who have foreign accounts. All non-issues are being raised and the House is getting disrupted. Why does no major party raise the issue of Reliance?”





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