Sambit Patra says Congress offered sweet deals to Vijay Mallya

Larry Hoffman
September 13, 2018

After Congress latched onto Vijay Mallya "meeting" Arun Jaitley, the BJP hit back by accusing Rahul Gandhi of "using black money".

"The appointment was not done in corridor but in Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's office. These letters show us how the previous dispensation under Sonia Gandhi was biased, partial and kept all norms and regulations at bay to give a sweet deal to Kingfisher Airlines", he alleged.

Vijay Mallya, who had earlier claimed of meeting the Finance Minister and offering a settlement deal to him, clarified his statement and said, "I did not have any formal meeting scheduled with him". It's a lie&violation of decorum.

Meanwhile, his colleague RS Prasad wondered if Mallya and Rahul Gandhi were "working in tandem".

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley rejected Vijay Mallya's claim that he had met the absconding bank fraud accused before he fled the nation in March 2016. One of them was Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who asked, "Why did the Finance Minister hide this information till now?" I hope the honourable judges will consider it favourably; everybody gets paid off and I guess that's the primary objective", said Mallya, who is fighting extradition to India on charges of fraud and money laundering amounting to around Rs 9,000 crores.

Reacting on the issue, BJP leader Subramanian Swamy tweeted, "I learn from my sources that the Lookout Notice issued by CBI for Mallya was modified from "Block Departure" to "Report Departure" on October 24, 2015 on orders from someone in MoF. Who?"

However, reacting to this, Jaitley said Jaitley said he had never given Mallya any appointment to meet him since 2014 and "the question of his having met me does not arise".

Rahul Gandhi also questioned Arun Jaitley's silence for nearly two-and-a-half years over his alleged meeting with Mallya. The government should now explain how and why he was allowed to leave and what transpired at those meetings.

India wants to extradite 62-year-old Indian businessman from Britain to face criminal action relating to loans taken out by his defunct Kingfisher Airlines and Indian authorities want to recover about $1.4 billion they say Kingfisher owes.

Rubbishing his claims, Arun Jaitley in his Facebook blog said, "He (Mallya) paced up to catch up with me and while walking uttered a sentence that "I am making an offer of settlement".

In a swipe at the government's "sabka saath, sabka vikas" slogan, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said the BJP's sole aim now was bhagode ka saath, lootero ka vikas' (helping absconders and enriching looters).

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