Congress factionalism behind raids against Kamal Nath aides?
New Delhi, April 09: The factionalism within the Congress might be the reason behind the Income Tax raids at Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath's close aides, says a well-informed source.
It's notable that the Income Tax (IT) Department on April 07 raided 52 locations, including in Delhi and Madhya Pradesh, belonging to close aides of Kamal Nath and others on charges of tax evasion and hawala transactions.
"The talk in the political circles of Madhya Pradesh is that Kamal Nath's opponents within the Congress party have given tip to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led Central government" says the source, who hails from Madhya Pradesh.
When asked why would they do so, he says, "They don't want to see Kamal Nath repeating success of Assembly elections in the Lok Sabha elections as it would push him more closer to the Gandhi family."
He says that the raid will affect the Congress' campaign in the state.
"Now the Congress would find it very difficult to contest Madhya Pradesh Lok Sabha elections effectively. The seized money was definitely meant to be used in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections in the state," says the source.
It's notable that news agency PTI has quoted IT Department sources as saying that there is a "strong possibility" of this cash being used as an election inducement to fund political campaigns and bribe voters in the poll-bound state and in Delhi.
The source also says that though Ashwin Sharma, an associate of Praveen Kakkar, Kamal Nath's former private secretary, claimed of being a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) man, but he has been helping the Congress.
The source also adds that that there is no doubt that the raids are politically motivated.
The Election Commission of India (ECI) has taken a note of raids against the opposition leaders.
It has written to the government and directed it to act against the use of black money during elections in a neutral manner.
In a letter addressed to the Revenue Secretary, the ECI said, "The Election Commission would like to strongly advise that all enforcement actions during the election period, even when conducted ruthlessly with a view to curb this blatant electoral malpractice, should be absolutely neutral, impartial and non- discriminatory."
In March, the IT Department raided the premises of retired Uttar Pradesh-cadre IAS officer and aide to BSP chief Mayawati Net Ram on charges of alleged tax evasion and recovered cash worth Rs 1.04 crore along with detection of properties worth Rs 225 crore.