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Jaitley questions Rahul Gandhi's silence on AgustaWestland scam after ED charge sheet


New Delhi, Apr 5: Union Minister Arun Jaitley on Friday questioned Congress president Rahul Gandhi's silence over the Enforcement Directorate (ED) chargesheet which says that term 'AP' which appears in James Christian Michel's diary indeeed means Ahmed Patel. Jaitley said the right to silence is available to an accused, but not to a prime ministerial aspirant.

Union Minister Arun Jaitley

"When no reply is given to such serious allegations then the country is entitled to presume that no reply can be given," Jaitley told a press conference in New Delhi adding, "Are RG, AP, FAM are imaginary persons?"

The Enforcement Directorate, filing its fourth supplementary charge sheet in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal case, had informed a Delhi special court on Thursday that "kickbacks were paid to defence officials, bureaucrats, media persons and important political persons of the ruling party. The ED reportedly told the court: "As per Christian Michel James, 'AP' means Ahmed Patel and 'Fam' means Family."

[Corruption on accelerator and development on ventilator was hallmark of Congress rule: Modi]

"The evidence is overwhelming. The needle of suspicion is clear and if no answer is given, it means there is no answer that can be offered," Jaitley said.

The agency, in its supplementary chargesheet filed under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), said "a part of kickback was paid to defence officials, bureaucrats, mediapersons and important political persons of the ruling party" when the deal was being struck.

[Stay up to date with our election coverage here]

Christian Michel, the alleged middleman arrested in the AgustaWestland scam, is understood to have reportedly identified the initials "AP" as Ahmed Patel in a chargesheet filed by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) before a court.

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