Smriti , Irani said the Enforcement Directorate’s probe is based on the details of investigations by police in Chhattisgarh as well as Andhra Pradesh and asked if Baghel is putting his own government in the dock.
New Delhi: The BJP on Saturday accused the Congress of using hawala money brought by illegal betting operators to fund its poll campaign in Chhattisgarh while targeting Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel over the allegation that he received over Rs 500 crore kickback. “Satta (power) me reh kar satta (betting) ka khel khela hai (he has played the game of betting while being in power),” Union Minister Smriti Irani said while addressing a press conference.
This comes after the Enforcement Directorate had claimed that a forensic analysis and a statement made by a ‘cash courier’ have led to “startling allegations” that Mahadev betting app promoters have paid about Rs 508 crore to Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel so far, and that “these are subject matter of investigation”
“Never before in our electoral history had people seen such evidence, Union Minister Smriti Irani said at a press conference, accusing Baghel of fighting the polls not with the support of people but hawala and betting operators.
The chief minister has in turn accused the BJP of using central investigation agencies to target him ahead of the assembly polls in the state on November 7 and 17. Hitting back, Irani said the Enforcement Directorate’s probe is based on the details of investigations by police in Chhattisgarh as well as Andhra Pradesh and asked if Baghel is putting his own government in the dock.
“The game of betting while being in power has become the face of Chhattisgarh Congress leadership. Yesterday, shocking facts regarding Bhupesh Baghel emerged before the country. More than Rs 5.30 Crores was seized from a man called Asim Das…Is it true that Congress leaders received money from Shubham Soni via Asim Das? Is it true that Asim Das was ordered by Shubham Soni to go to Raipur and give money to Baghel as election expenses?”
#WATCH | Union Minister Smriti Irani says, “Congress party is contesting the Chhattisgarh elections using hawala operators. Chhattisgarh Police and Andhra Pradesh do not come under the administrative purview of the BJP. So, is Bhupesh Baghel questioning his own Government?” pic.twitter.com/IhWXYoNPPM
— ANI (@ANI) November 4, 2023
There are voice messages and statements of the accused linking the use of betting money for funding the Congress’ campaign in the state and kickbacks given to Baghel, she claimed.