NEW DELHI: In line with the party strategy to mount attack on the Congress in the run-up to the Karnataka Assembly polls, the BJP on Thursday dragged former Union Minister Kapil Sibal in its line of fire. The party alleged Sibal had connived with an alleged money launderer to acquire prime land at a nominal price in the national capital.
The BJP alleged that the former Union minister, who held key portfolios in the UPA government, had acquired land valued at about Rs 89 crore in Lutyens’ Delhi by paying just Rs 1 lakh in 2013. Union Minister Smriti Irani alleged, on the basis of media reports, that Sibal and his wife had acquired a company called ‘Grand Castello’ from a person who had been probed by the CBI in a case of money laundering. Referring to the revelations by South African journalists to substantiate her charges, Irani, while briefing reporters at the BJP headquarters, said, “I want to ask the Congress president Rahul Gandhi whether Sibal’s dealings with money launderers is politically acceptable to his party.
Is it so natural for the Congress leadership today to embrace the money launderer, to shake hand with those that they had investigated for bribery?”Dismissing the charges, Sibal later said the BJP was trying to divert attentions from the CBSE question paper leaks. He asserted that he had bought the said company from his own money for which he had paid taxes. He claimed that the charge of dealing with money launderer is being levelled by a person who doesn’t know the meaning of money laundering.
The Congress leader, in turn, asked the BJP to explain the relations of its leaders with mega bank scam accused Nirav Modi and former IPL commissioner Lalit Modi.The former law minister also threatened to file a defamation suit against a news website which Irani had cited for her allegations against him.