Gadkari dumped as Guj poll campaigner but to remain BJP Prez

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Nitin Gadkari
New Delhi, Oct 27: Despite Gujarat BJP's decision to dump Nitin Gadkari, national party leaders have unanimously decided to back him as the party president after a late-night party meeting on Friday, Oct 26. 

BJP leaders in Delhi overruled all rumours over Gadkari's resignation as BJP president over allegations of dubious land deals.

Prakash Javadekar, the BJP spokesperson was quoted as saying, "We stand by our party president. All speculation of him resigning is all wrong."

Party leaders in the national capital have showed their reliance on Gadkari just a day after Gujarat BJP's decision of removing Gadkari's name as its star campaigner No. 1.

Narendra Modi-led Gujarat BJP earlier had submitted a list consisting of 39 star campaigners before the election commission. One of Gujarat BJP leaders was quoted as saying, "We listed Gadkari as our No. 1 campaigner because he is party president; otherwise, everyone knows Modi is the only star campaigner in Gujarat."

However, the state party dropped Gadkari's name from the list as they have been trying to project a corruption-free party image before the voters.

One after another corruption charges hit 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 4 close aides of Gadkari.

The Income Tax department on Thursday began a 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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