NEW DELHI: Rejecting Congress’ charges that Dholpur Palace in Rajasthan was owned by the state and not by chief minister Vasundhra Raje’s son and Lok Sabha MP Dushyant Singh, the BJP said the opposition party was making “baseless” allegations. The ruling party even flashed documents to suggest that Palace was owned by Dushyant legally and there was no wrong doing.
The Congress leader and former minister Jairam Ramesh had held a press conference in Delhi to allege that heritage Dholpur Palace originally owned by Hemant Singh, Dushyant Singh, and later handed over to the state.
BJP said that there cannot be any action against their leader (Raje) as allegations were based on some leaked documents and not an indictment by a court.
Coming in strong defence of Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhra Raje, her cabinet colleague Rajendra Rathore and state BJP chief Ashok Parnami said they strongly reject the allegations and even questioned Congress’ morality as it had been accused of many scams in the past.
With incessant pressure on Raje, as new documents kept surfacing every day, both Parnami and Rathore had been holding press conferences daily for the past 10 days.
After Ramesh fired a salvo, Parnami and Rathore came armed with documents. Addressing a press conference in Jaipur, the Parnami said, “Without knowing the facts, Jairam Ramesh made baseless allegations against Chief Minister Raje and her family on the Dholpur Palace that belongs to her son Dushyant Singh. We have got all evidences and legal papers that proves Dushyant has ownership rights on Dholpur palace".
Rathore’s Raje trusted aide and minister challenged Ramesh to prove charges or quit. If he doesn’t prove the charges, he should quit. If charges are proved I will quit.”
Parnami produced property documents to say Raja Dushyant Singh has control over the palace.
"It was Government of India's General Administration department's notification of December 1956, and later Union Home Department orders that Maharaja Rana Hemant Singh (father of Dushyant Singh) was declared legal heir of the palace", Parnami said.
Then in 2007, a fast track court in Bharatpur made a settlement of Dholpur Palace in favour of Dushyant Singh and Hemant Singh and issued the decree, and this decree was registered too, Parnami added.
The BJP tried to turn tables on the BJP saying it was in fact during the UPA regime that the City Palace Dholpur was paid a cash compensation of over Rs.1.97 crore by the National Highway
Authority in 2010 on acquiring some land. “If the NHAI paid the compensation to Dushyant, then who had the legal rights on the palace, Ramesh should know it,” Parnami said.
On Hemant Singh's charge that Raje was making false claims, Parnami said,"We have affidavits signed by Hemant Singh regarding handing over of the Dholpur palace.”