Graft charges eclipse Gadkari's hope to be BJP chief again?

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Nitin Gadkari Advani
New Delhi, Oct 26: As Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Nitin Gadkari has been accused of corruption charges, his desire to carry on as party President for a second term now appears doubtful.

Gadkari will complete his tenure as party president by the end of this year. But many are saying that his aspiration to remain in the post for a second term is impossible.

According to analysts, though Gadkari has strong support from Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), it would not be enough to retain the post of BJP head.

While LK Advani, Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley have backed him, there are many others within the party who are questioning the move to support Gadkari.

Moreover, investigations by Television channels show that four of Gadkari's very close aides, including his former driver and accountant, have been directors in at least 26 companies and that too within a period of the past four years.

Gadkari's former driver, Manohar Panse, was a director in 11 companies between 2009 and 2011. Gadkari's very close aide, Kawdu Zade, has been a director in 16 companies in the same period. Purti employee Nishant Agnihotri has been a director in 13 companies.

A very close aide, Sagar Kotwaliwale has been a director in 9 companies. Like the controversial Purti Sugar and Power Private Ltd. in Nagpur, there are three more companies controlled by the 4 close aides of Gadkari.

The Income Tax department on Thursday began probe into Purti Power and Sugar Ltd. (PPSL). I-T authorities said they will also probe source of funds of the 18 companies that invested in Purti. Prima facie evidence suggested that shell companies had invested in Purti. Sources said that, if necessary, Gadkari might also be summoned in the case.

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