NEW DELHI: BJP chief Amit Shah‘s son Jay Shah slapped a Rs 100 crore defamation suit on a website, which alluded to irregularities by a company owned by Shah junior, resulting in a fierce war of words between the ruling party and the Congress, with AAP and others also joining in.
Citing filings with the Registrar of Companies, the report said that the turnover of Temple Enterprise Private Ltd, a company where Jay Shah was a director, rose 16,000 times from Rs 15,000 in 2014-15 to Rs 80.5 crore in 2015-16. It also said that the company received a loan of Rs 15.78 crore from Rajesh Khandwala, a relative of Rajya Sabha member Parimal Nathwani, who is also a senior executive at Reliance Industries.
In a statement, Jay denied any wrongdoing and said, “The article makes false, derogatory and defamatory imputation against me by creating in the minds of right-thinking people an impression that my business owes its ‘success’ to my father Shri Amitbhai Shah’s political position… My businesses are fully legitimate and conducted in a lawful manner on commercial lines, which is reflected in my tax records, and are through banking transactions.”
While the Congress and AAP demanded an enquiry, railway minister Piyush Goyal strongly defended Shah and said that there were no irregularities. He said that Khandwala had been Shah’s stock broker for close to a decade and the loans were from a finance company, which was not just properly routed but also disclosed.
“There is absolutely no substance in the article. We reject all allegations against Jay Shah,” Goyal said at a press conference and added that Jay carried out “fully lawful business activities on purely commercial lines”.
Earlier, Congress leader Kapil Sibal said that it seemed the fortunes of some people had changed after the change of power.
“Today, we ask a question to the Prime Minister, the pradhan sevak … Now, what do you have to say about crony capitalism? Will you give direction to the CBI to probe the matter? Will you ask ED to arrest these people? Because in the case of opposition, the ED immediately sends notice and shows speed in arresting them…If somebody’s name is Jay, Amit and Shah who can arrest them. I can confidently tell you that the Prime Minister will remain silent,” Sibal said at a press conference.
Attacking Modi, Yechury tweeted, “Latest in the series of corruption cases under Modi. Birla-Sahara Diary, GSPCL, Vyapam, Lalit Modi, rice and mining scams. Why is PM silent?”
Latest in the series of corruption cases under Modi. Birla-Sahara diary, GSPCL, Vyapam, Lalit Modi, Rice and Mining scam. Why is PM silent?
— Sitaram Yechury (@SitaramYechury)
“L K Advani had resigned after the Jain Hawala diary episode while its then party president Bangaru Laxman had quit after a corruption expose,” Yechury said, asking will it happen now under the Modi government.
While CPI’s D Raja demanded a “high level SIT probe monitored by the court”, AAP sought a criminal enquiry into the allegations.