PM’s Sharp Jab To Opposition’s Probe Agency Claims

Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to Hindi publication Hindustan (File).

New Delhi:

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday hit again at claims by the opposition – that the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party makes use of central businesses to focus on rivals, notably earlier than an election – by saying solely three per cent of the Enforcement Directorate’s circumstances are linked to politicians.

“Let me tell you a fact that is not discussed much. Of the corruption cases probed by the ED, only three per cent (are against) people associated with politics. The remaining 97 per cent cases are linked to officials and criminals,” the Prime Minister mentioned in an unique interplay with Hindi outlet Hindustan,

The Prime Minister additionally emphasised his anti-corruption stance, saying, “Eliminating corruption has been a key priority of our government for 10 years”, and countered the opposition’s declare that motion is taken solely in opposition to rival political leaders or in non-BJP dominated states. “Steps are being taken even in states where the BJP is in power,” he mentioned.

“The narratives you have heard – that it is only political corruption that we are after – are being circulated by people who are under the sword of investigative agencies,” he declared.

Mr Modi’s authorities is below heavy hearth after ED motion in opposition to senior opposition leaders, together with Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his former deputy, Manish Sisodia. Bharat Rashtra Samithi chief Ok Kavitha and ex-Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren had been additionally arrested.

READ | “Centre To Impose President’s Rule In Days To Come”: AAP’s Big Claim

Mr Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party and Mr Soren’s Jharkhand Mukti Morcha are each members of the Congress-led INDIA opposition bloc, whereas the BRS is led by former Telangana Chief Minister Ok Chandrasekhar Rao (Ok Kavitha is his daughter), who’s seen as a fierce critic of the BJP.

Following the AAP boss’ arrest on March 21 – weeks earlier than the 2024 Lok Sabha election – the INDIA bloc launched a fierce assault on Prime Minister Modi’s occasion, claiming it had acted out of concern.

Arguing in opposition to his arrest within the Delhi High Court, Mr Kejriwal – who might be in jail until Monday – mentioned his arrest had been timed to disrupt the AAP’s election marketing campaign in Delhi and Punjab. His allies – Congress boss Mallikarjun Kharge and MP Rahul Gandhi – have lashed at out the BJP and Mr Modi.

Tamil Nadu’s ruling Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, additionally an INDIA member, and Nationalist Congress Party veteran Sharad Pawar additionally reacted; Mr Pawar condemned the “vindictive misuse of central agencies to target the opposition, especially as general elections loom”.

READ | “ED, CBI Independent. Nothing To Do With Us”: Union Minister

The centre, nevertheless, has rubbished such claims, insisting the businesses involved are appearing independently and consistent with the Prime Minister’s purpose of wiping out corruption in any respect ranges.

READ | Congress Can’t Think Beyond Dynasty, Corruption: PM Modi

The Prime Minister, who routinely assaults the opposition, notably the Congress, over allegations of corruption and accuses the occasion of training nepotism, additionally shared information to point out the elevated and different scale of Enforcement Directorate motion since 2014, when the BJP first got here to energy.

READ | “Whoever Has Looted Country Will Pay”: PM Modi On Corruption

“The ED has also arrested many corrupt officers,” the Prime Minister mentioned.

“Assets worth thousands of crores (belonging to) corrupt bureaucrats and criminals linked to illicit funding and drug dealers have been attached. Before 2014, the ED attached assets worth only Rs 5,000 crore, whereas in the last 10 years that amount has increased to over Rs 1 trillion.”

The PM welcomed the elevated quantities of cash seized – “Rs 34 lakh in cash before 2014 and over Rs 2,200 crore under our government” – stating the funds could possibly be used for the individuals.

“Imagine… if this money was invested in welfare schemes for the poor, how many would benefit… how many opportunities could be created for the youth… infrastructure projects can be launched.”

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