NEW DELHI: Dubbing as "diversionary tactic" Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's threat to slap defamation cases against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and other AAP leaders, Congress tonight demanded his resignation and sought a JPC probe into alleged financial irregularities in DDCA under his watch.
Party general secretary Shakeel Ahmed demanded that Jaitley resign as Cabinet Minister "in the interest of justice" as he is also incharge of corporate affairs ministry, which looks after such issues, and that the government should initiate steps to constitute a Joint Parliamentary Committee to probe alleged irregularities in Delhi and District Cricket Association.
"Jaitley should not use the defamation cases he has planned to file against AAP leaders as a diversionary tactic in the wake of demands for his resignation," Ahmed said. Ahmed, the party's senior spokesman, said Jaitley's ouster was all the more necessary after BJP MP Kriti Azad's allegations about corruption in DDCA. He said Azad was not just a BJP leader but also a member of India's 1983 cricket world cup winning squad. Jaitley headed the cricket body for 13 years till 2013.
He said "naturally" the issue would be raised in Parliament tomorrow by different political parties as Jaitley was "practically the number two in the government". As regards Congress, he said that the parliamentary party would take a decision.
Another Congress spokesman Sandeep Dikshit, who hails from Delhi, however, sang a different tune. He said the matter was between Kejriwal and Jaitley. He alleged Kejriwal was in the habit of making "wild and baseless" allegations against "anybody and everybody" and took defamation "very lightly".
Dikshit said it would be interesting to see how things pan out. If there is no substance in Kejriwal's allegations, he will have to face the "brunt" for making such charges.