Are Modi and Amit Shah blind to the corruption within BJP?

Has the Opposition really failed to find a single charge of graft against the ruling government?

 |  3-minute read |   27-05-2016
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To mark two years of his government, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a rally in Saharanpur on May 26. He said, "Have you heard in these two years that the Modi government indulged in corruption? Have you ever heard anybody in my government being accused of bungling of accounts?"

He went on to say, "Two years ago, newspapers only had stories about corruption. But in these two years, I am proud to say that these stories have disappeared".

26modi-saharanpur_052716092808.jpg PM Modi celebrates two years of Vikas Parv at Saharanpur.

A day later, BJP president Amit Shah extolled the achievements of the Modi government, while stressing that the BJP has provided such an effective government to the people that even the Opposition could not make allegations of corruption against the Centre.

Is this the reality? Has crime vanished from BJP-ruled central or state governments? Has the Opposition really failed to find a single charge of corruption against the BJP leaders? Is BJP ruled India a corruption-free country?

The biggest charge against the UPA government was corruption. It faced serious charges of corruption in the 2G, CWG, Antrix Devas deal, Coalgate scams and more. And it is also true that, so far, the Modi government hasn't faced a single charge of corruption of the magnitude of the earlier scams.

But saying that it hasn't faced any corruption charge is far from the truth. As Narendra Modi and Amit Shah were giving chest-thumping speeches about having given India a corruption-free administration under the BJP, Eknath Khadse, one of its seniormost ministers in Maharashtra, was named in two serious charges.

The first said he allegedly received phone calls from fugitive Dawood Ibrahim's house in Karachi, Pakistan and the second that the minister had bought, against norms, MIDC land in the names of his wife and son-in-law - and at throwaway rates.

He also faced the heat when his PA allegedly demanded a bribe of Rs 30 crore. These charges are related to national security, the mafia - politian nexus, corruption and conflict of interest.

So far, no action has been taken against the tainted minister.

Several other prominent leaders have also faced various graft allegations. While finance minister Arun Jaitley's name came up in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) scam, external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj faced the Opposition's heat in the Lalit Modi scandal.

Even prominent chief ministers of the BJP attracted corruptions charges: Rajasthan CM Vasundhara Raje's name surfaced in the Lalit Modi and mining scams, Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan was named in the DMAT and Vyapam scams, while the CM of neighbouring Chhattisgarh, Raman Singh, found himself in the middle of the PDS/NAN controversy.

Anar Patel, the daughter of Gujarat CM Anandiben Patel too was accused of acquiring land for resorts for her partners at discounted prices. So Amit Shah's claim falls flat. How can one forget that the BJP suspended its Darbhanga MP, Kirti Azad, when he made statements saying there was "corruption" in the DDCA when Union finance minister Arun Jaitley was heading it?

In July 2015, veteran BJP leader and Lok Sabha MP Shanta Kumar released copies of a letter he wrote to party chief Amit Shah stating that the Vyapam scam had dented the image of the NDA government and "made all of us bow our heads in shame".

In this letter, he also referred to Rajasthan and Maharashtra, without specifically mentioning the controversies surrounding Rajasthan CM Vasundhara Raje or Maharashtra rural development minister Pankaja Munde, and sought the setting up of an ethics committee to act as a "Lokpal" to "keep a check on leaders in the government". Despite facing a series of corruption allegations, both from outside and from within, how can Narendra Modi and Amit Shah say that no such charges have ever been levelled against the BJP in these past two years?

They are either blind to the corruption within BJP, or fail to consider these as legitimate "corruption" charges.

And if that is the case, Indians all over the world can breathe a sigh of relief because if this is not corruption, then India was, is and will forever be corruption-free.


Ashok Upadhyay Ashok Upadhyay @ashoupadhyay

Editor, India Today Television.

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