Former BJP president Nitin Gadkari today denied he had threatened income tax
authorities but insisted that the raids conducted on some companies allegedly
associated with his Purti Group were a part of a conspiracy to malign him and
"I never threatened the IT Department or its officials. I have full faith in the
professional integrity of the department. Unfortunately, my public statements
have been distorted and misinterpreted," Gadkari said in a statement.
However, he felt there was a conspiracy behind the raids. "...I have reasons to
believe that unnecessary dragging my name in the context of these inquiries is
part of a conspiracy to defame me and my party".
The "deliberate move", he added, "to link me and members of my family in
connection with these open inquiries against some companies and the misleading
briefings to the media in this regard is calculated, mischievous and politically
motivated to damage my reputation".
He said that while exposing the "sinister game plan of the UPA government" to
influence the inquires and mislead the media, he had only urged the IT
Department and its officials to remain impartial and not get influenced by the
dictates of their political bosses.
The IT Department and its officials are free to conduct any independent inquiry
in response to complaints received against any company or individuals, he said.
The offices of 11 companies who have reportedly invested in Purti Group were
raided by the IT authorities on January 22, a day before the election of the BJP
Nitin Gadkari was all set to seek second term for the top post but was forced to
give up after senior BJP leaders including L K Advani objected to his
candidature in wake of the charges of financial irregularities against him.
Gadkari reiterated that neither he nor any member of his family have anything to
do with the companies against whom the inquires have been going on and that
"these are not Purti Group companies".
A day after demitting office, Gadkari had told party workers in Nagpur, "As BJP
president I had to maintain dignity and work within boundaries.... Now I am a
free man. Congress' boat is about to sink and when our party comes to power,
there would be no Chidambaram or Sonia to save them (IT officials)."
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