BJP, Congress Accuses Each Other For Mallya Mess As Jaitley In The Eye Of Storm


New Delhi:  Congress president Rahul Gandhi reiterating his demand for the resignation of Union finance minister Arun Jaitley accusing him of ‘colluding with’ Mallya and ‘allowing the criminal to flee’. However, the BJP dismissed the charges with Union minister Piyush Goyal countering that it was the Gandhi family’s ‘relations’ with Mallya that caused banks to loan money to Mallya in violation of all norms.

Mallya, who fled India even as a debt court in Bangalore was set to act against him for defaulting on loans issued by several banks led by the state-owned State Bank of India, is in London where a court will pronounce its verdict in an extradition hearing against him on December 10. The court finished hearing the case on Wednesday.

Addressing a news conference at the Congress headquarters in Delhi, Gandhi also referred to his party colleague PL Punia, who alleged that he had seen Mallya in conversation with Jaitley on March 1, 2016, a day before the Kingfisher Airlines chief fled the country.

The context was a statement by Mallya on Wednesday, claiming that he met Jaitley before leaving India and offered to settle his dues. Jaitley immediately rebutted Mallya’s claim and maintained that he had not given the businessman an appointment since 2014, but that the latter used his privilege as a Member of Parliament (MP) and accosted him in Parliament. Mallya too admitted as much subsequently.

“Mr Jaitley is lying, the government is lying on Rafale and the government is lying on Vijay Mallya. A meeting was held with Mr Arun Jaitley and Vijay Mallya. The logistics of Mr Mallya leaving the country were discussed in that meeting,” Gandhi told reporters.

Describing it as an “open and shut case of collusion”, the Congress chief said there was some deal between Jaitley and Mallya, and demanded the finance minister’s resignation and a probe into the matter.

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