At An Event With 80 Rich Industrialists, Modi Attempts To Defend His Cronyism, Cites Amar Singh
Under Fire For His Connections With Anil Ambani, Nirav Modi, Mehul Choksi & Others, Modi Compared Himself To Mahatma Gandhi
PM Modi has come under increasing criticism for his closeness with Nirav Modi, Mehul Choksi, Anil Ambani and other industrialists. Today at a ceremony to launch certain projects in Uttar Pradesh with an audience which included Eighty industrialists, including major firms such as Birla, Reliance, and Adani, he seemed to attempt a brave even if laughable defence.
PM Modi said that even people of other parties met industrialists but they did it behind closed doors. He pointed to former Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh sitting in the audience and said: “Who knows better than Amar Singh sitting here how other parties’ hobnob with industrialists behind closed doors.” Amar Singh responded with approving laughter.
PM Modi did not make any comment about whether he or Amar Singh was aware of any wrongdoing in the hypothetical meetings behind closed doors or whether he had any proof other than Amar Singh’s ‘knowledge’.
He painted a rather pitiful picture and appeared to be arguing that his brazenness should be seen as evidence of his innocence.
“Agar neeyat saaf ho toh kisi ke saath khade ho, daag nahi lagta. (If your conscience is clear you can stand with anyone without getting tarnished). He (Mahatma Gandhi) stood with Birla without any hesitation,” Modi said.
He also stated that industrialists have a major role to play in the development of a country. He continued, “Inki bhi bhoomika hoti hai. Apmanit karenge? Kaun sa tariqa hai? Jo ghalat hain woh toh desh chod kar chale gaye hain. (They also have a role. Will you insult them? Is this the way? Those who were in the wrong have run away from the country).”
First, pictures of the 2018 Davos Summit had appeared, where PM Modi could be seen with fugitive diamond merchant Nirav Modi.
Later, he made headlines when he referred to Mehul Choksi – a partner-in-crime of Nirav Modi – as Mehul ‘Bhai’.
Choksi has now availed Antiguan citizenship and passport. Interestingly, PM Modi had met the Antiguan PM earlier in April this year.
A fresh instance, where Modi has allegedly changed rules in favour of millionaire Anil Ambani, is the Rafale deal. PM Modi and his government are tight-lipped about the allegations of corruption in the Rafale deal, where India has purchased 36 fighter jets from France.
The government is not revealing the price at which these jets were bought, nor is it explaining how a ten-day-old Reliance Defence Limited owned by Anil Ambani, with a capital of mere Rs. 5,00,000, ended up dealing in a project of this scale.
If PM Modi has nothing to hide, then why is his government refusing to answer the legitimate questions posed by the Opposition and the media?
It is also worth noting that Indian government has not asked assistance from Antigua, to bring fugitive Choksi back to country.
Prime Minister’s “saaf neeyat” can only be verified once he explains these lapses.