AAP questions BJP over 'silence' on relations with alleged electoral bond donor

Delhi Education Minister and AAP leader Atishi Singh with party leader Priyanka Kakkar addresses a press conference, in New Delhi, Saturday, March 23, 2024.
Delhi Education Minister and AAP leader Atishi Singh with party leader Priyanka Kakkar addresses a press conference, in New Delhi, Saturday, March 23, 2024.

New Delhi | The AAP on Sunday questioned the BJP on maintaining "silence" over its relationship with Sarath Chandra Reddy, whose companies allegedly donated Rs 60 crore to the BJP through electoral bonds.

Reddy of Aurobindo Pharma was arrested by the central agency last November in connection with the excise policy case. No comments were available from Reddy or his company over the charges. There was no immediate reaction to the allegations from the BJP either.

Addressing a press conference, Delhi cabinet minister Saurabh Bharadwaj said, "This is established on the website of the Election Commission of India that the BJP has recovered donations amounting to Rs 55 crore from the prime accused in the alleged Delhi excise policy, Sarath Chandra Reddy, who was also titled as the ‘kingpin’ in the scam, after his arrest.”

The senior Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader expressed surprise over the BJP’s "silence" in this entire matter. “Their prominent leaders and ministers, including Anurag Thakur, Smriti Irani, Manoj Tiwari and Virendra Sachdeva, everyone is silent. Every person is stunned as to what has happened. How did this matter come to light?,” he charged.

He asked three questions of the BJP at the press conference.

“The first question is that how does the BJP know Sarath Chandra Reddy? What is the relationship between them? How does the BJP know the prime accused of PMLA? Which BJP leaders met him? When and where did they meet? What did they discuss about the transactions?”

The senior AAP leader said electoral bonds are not donated in vacuum.

“It is not that someone placed a bond of Rs 50 crore at their door, and the BJP people opened their office in the morning and suddenly saw ‘Oh, there is a bond!’. The accused must have given the bonds to someone in person, whether a minister or any chairperson,” he said.

The second question is why did the BJP receive donations amounting to a whopping Rs 60 crore from Reddy through his companies, he said.

“The third question: Why did the BJP hide all these transactions from everyone? Why did the BJP not disclose these facts to the ED, the CBI, and the citizens of India, if they are not guilty?” he questioned.

The AAP had asked the ED on Saturday to file a case against the BJP, alleging that the saffron party received crores of rupees from an accused in the alleged Delhi excise policy scam through electoral bonds.

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