As Congress is holding nationwide protests against the central government over the issues of inflation, price rise, Goods and Services Tax (GST) and unemployment, Union Minister Anurag Thakur on Friday hit out at the top brass of the grand old party for creating ruckus on the streets and said that the country wants to know the truth that they are hiding.
Several Congress leaders, including Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi and Shashi Tharoor, were detained today while marching to Rashtrapati Bhavan to mark their protest against the issues that are important for the common man.
However, Anurag Thakur was attacking the party over Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) investigation against the Congress top brass.
Alleging that Congress is putting pressure on these agencies through protests, the Union Minister further said that the country wants to know the truth and the investigating agency is doing its work.
“Why are they creating ruckus on the streets? Why is Congress scared of investigating agencies? What are they hiding? Putting pressure on these agencies is not fair. They are only doing their work. Sonia ji and Rahul ji please don’t play such games, the country wants to know the truth that you are hiding. The country wants to know the truth and the investigating agency wants to investigate,” said Anurag Thakur.
Earlier in the day, lashing out at the centre on issues like price rise and inflation, former Congress Party President Rahul Gandhi said that India is witnessing the death of democracy.
Rahul Gandhi alleged that the centre has put “its people” in the government machinery.
“How do you feel about the death of democracy? What this country built in 70 years was destroyed in 8 years. There is no democracy in India today!,” senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said.
On Thursday lashing at the centre for missing the central probe agencies, Rahul Gandhi had said the investigation into the National Herald case was an intimidation tactic by the BJP. The case pertains to the alleged financial irregularities in the Congress-promoted Young Indian Private Limited, which owns the National Herald newspaper.
“We are not afraid,” he said, adding, “Whatever they [BJP] do won’t make any difference. I will continue to do the work to protect our country, its democracy and brotherhood.” He added, “They think by putting a little pressure they can silence us. We won’t be silent. We will stand against what the BJP is doing. We will not be intimidated.”
On Thursday, Congress leader and Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge was quizzed for around eight hours by the Enforcement Directorate office in the national capital in connection with the money laundering case involving the National Herald newspaper.
Mallikarjun Kharge alleged that the frequent raids by the central agencies on opposition leaders are an attempt by the government to eliminate the opposition.
“If the government wanted non-involvement in such matters (money laundering), it should perform its job unbiasedly, but the way they are doing it so hurriedly implies that it is their attempt to defame and demoralise the Congress and eliminate the Bharatiya Janata Party’s opposition,” he said when asked about the sealing of Young India office in the national capital.
He further said that the ED was following its “procedure” and he did not find it relevant to repeat his comments over the matter “as it is a matter of political vendetta”.
ED had sealed the Young India office at the Herald House building in the national capital on Wednesday as no one was available in the office during the search, because of which they were not able to complete the search.
The probe agency took action a day after the ED carried out raids at 12 locations in the national capital and at other places in connection with the National Herald case in which top Congress leaders were accused of violating norms.
The National Herald case pertains to the alleged financial irregularities under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and was registered about nine months ago after a trial court took cognisance of an Income Tax department probe carried out on the basis of a private criminal complaint filed by former Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Subramanian Swamy in 2013.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)