Published On : Tue, May 13th, 2014

Nitin Gadkari to become BJP chief again?

File Pics

File Pic

Nagpur News.

As the Income Tax department came clear over evasion charges on former BJP President Nitin Gadkari, speculations are rife over him being elevated to the party’s top post again. IT department’s latest move is seen as triggered from the certainty of BJP forming the government at the Centre. However, political insiders say that the clean chit will boost Gadkari’s morale to new high and let the party superiors to pave way for Gadkari to become party chief, the post he quitted after the corruption charges were leveled against him.

Reacting to the development, BJP asked Congress to take back all its allegations made during the Lok Sabha poll campaign, especially in Nagpur. “Congress party should withdraw all the allegations that they had made in this election,” BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

New Delhi based activist Sunil Dalal had sought a query in this regard under Right to Information, replying on which Income Tax department who was probing against Gadkari, came up with this information.

Dalal pleaded before the IT Appellate Authority that he was not demanding the names of IT officials carrying out the probe, but merely whether there was any pending inquiry against the BJP’s candidate for the Lok Sabha election from Nagpur.

Accepting the plea, the department gave a clean chit to Gadkari in April. This vindicated Gadkari’s oft-repeated stand that the allegations of wrongdoing levelled against him in January 2013, when he was about to get a second term as the BJP president, were “baseless and politically motivated”.

“The timing of this malicious and sinister campaign, mounted through a motivated high-voltage media blitz, was part of a conspiracy to tarnish my image,” Gadkari then maintained.

BJP sources said the clean chit raises a question mark over the veracity of the operations reportedly undertaken by the Income Tax Department in January 2013, which were described by the media as “raids, searches and inquiries” into Gadkari’s affairs.

Gadkari did not take the developments kindly, which resulted in him losing out on a second term as party president. He openly warned then that after the BJP government came to power in 2014, “I would not spare any of them”, referring to the Income Tax sleuths who reportedly investigated him and his businesses.