BJP and Congress leaders broke into a war of words as Income Tax officers raided at least 50 locations linked to Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath.
While Kamal Nath said BJP is misusing Constitutional bodies for political gains as it can sense defeat in the Lok Sabha elections, former CM and BJP leader Shivraj Singh Chouhan hit back saying Kamal Nath is going the Mamata Banerjee way and stopping Income Tax officers from doing their jobs.
Reacting to the Income Tax searches on the premises of his close aides, Kamal Nath on Sunday said the BJP was taking such actions for electoral gains sensing defeat in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.
The Income Tax (I-T) department launched pre-dawn searches on at least 50 locations in Delhi and Madhya Pradesh (Indore and Bhopal) against people linked to Nath on charges of alleged tax evasion, officials said.
The searches were linked to suspected movement of hawala money during the ongoing poll season and tax evasion, they added.
MP Police, CRPF engage in scuffle as Income Tax raids on Kamal Nath-linked properties continue
In a statement issued through Madhya Pradesh Congress media cell coordinator Narendra Saluja, Nath said, “The situation about the I-T raids is not clear yet. It would be appropriate to speak on this after the situation is clear. But the entire country knows how the constitutional institutions were used and against whom they were used during the past five years.”
“These institutions were used to scare people. When they do not have anything to say on development and their work, they used this kind of tactics against their opponents,” the CM’s statement added.
“When the BJP saw its defeat in the coming Lok Sabha polls, they started taking such actions deliberately to take benefit in the election. They also used such tactics before the last Assembly polls,” he asserted.
Nath added that several political parties and states had witnessed such kind of tactics during the last five years.
I-T dept conducts raids on MP CM Kamal Nath’s nephew, close aides
“We were ready for this. There should be an impartial inquiry into everything. Such tactics do not make any difference to us.
“The people of the state know the truth. In the coming Lok Sabha polls, the people of the state will answer these acts,” the chief minister said in the statement.
Shivraj, on the other hand, told ANI, “I-T dept is doing its work, it’s their constitutional right. CRPF soldiers were on duty, they were being stopped; MP Police clashed with CRPF. What Mamata ji did in Bengal, the same game is being played in MP. It’s an attempt to save corrupts.”
Chouhan added, “Cash is being recovered, documents are found, properties are unearthed. I’m surprised that the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh instead of cooperating, he is trying to stop the Income Tax department’s proceedings.”
The BJP-led central government also came under fire from former Madhya Pradesh chief minister and senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh.
Expressing ignorance about the cash found during Sunday’s I-T raids, Singh said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) could go to any extent (to have its way).
Asked about the saffron party’s allegation that crores of rupees were found from people who had been claiming that the “watchman” was a thief, Singh said, “Thousands of crores would have been recovered if the (I-T) raids were conducted at the houses of mama-mami (referring to former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and his wife) and (BJP president) Amit Shah.”