As if the charges of Maharashtra land scam were not enough, BJP president Nitin Gadkari now faces fresh political heat from another set of charges. A report in The Hindu indicates serious corporate wrongdoings by Gadkari by creating shell companies, benaami shareholders and the like. As details emerge about the dubious funding for Gadkari’s company Purti Sugar and Power Ltd., the clamour for his resignation is becoming shriller. To add to Gadkari’s discomfiture, party MP Ram Jethmalani has demanded his resignation, while advising him against a second term.
There are several unanswered questions over the source of funds for Purti Power and Sugar Ltd controlled by Gadkari. Investigations claim that major investments and large loans to Purti were made by a construction firm IRB group, which had won contracts between 1995 and 1999, when Gadkari was the PWD minister in Maharashtra.
The story becomes a bit spicier now. Gadkari’s ex-driver was made a director in six of his companies overnight ! Gadkari showed the same “generosity” to his ex-accountant also. The story doesn’t end here as several people, mentioned as directors in company records, deny having even met Mr. Gadkari. To twist it further, the addresses of several investor companies, which invested in Purti, are fake. Unless the charges are refuted convincingly, he could become a serious ebarassment and liability for the BJP, which has been quite vocal about corruption by the Congress leaders.
So far, Gadkari and the BJP have chosen to keep silent, leaving them open to the charge of being selective in targeting corruption.