Stepping up its attack on the Congress-led UPA Government on the VVIP chopper deal, the BJP said that though Union Defence Minister A K Antony was trying hard to save his “Mr Clean” image, “he too was guilty as the deal came about during his tenure”. “Antony has given several orders to inquire into the monumental chopper scam. He is struggling to keep his Mr Clean image on the forefront by desperately ordering an inquiry and notice to cancel it,” said BJP spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy.
Antony has been the Defence Minister since October 2006 and is guilty of what happened under him as minister, he added. The BJP also referred to reports alleging that close associates of a former Union minister and a Congress vice-president “were beneficiaries of the bribes paid in the VVIP chopper deal”. “In a posting on the website of the Press Information Bureau on February 14, a reference was made in point 32 from the Director of Income Tax that kickbacks were paid to middlemen in the chopper deal... After accepting this, the government is now trying to find out who were paid bribes. The name of family members of a former union minister and a close associate of a Congress vice-president are coming up... The Congress should come out with a clarification on these allegations,” said Rudy.
“We will raise the issue strongly in Parliament,” reiterated Rudy.