Congress VP Rahul Gandhi has triggered an unprecedented debate by accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of taking kickbacks from Sahara group during his tenure as a Chief Minister of Gujarat. The 11 page document available in the Supreme Court is suspected to have alleged payment entries that have been made to more than 100 politicians from at least 18 parties including BJP, Congress, JD(U), RJD, SP, NCP, JMM, JVM, TMC, BJD, BKU, Shiv Sena and LJP.
A report published by The Indian Express says that there are two printed pages with names of these politicians that have a total of 54 names. Another two printed pages have names of another 62 leaders contesting elections.
The document also has a detailed information on payment dates of 2010 against the alleged entries. The documents also have a 5 pages report on received payment along with cash disbursement details made between 2013 and 2014. As per the document, the total outflow of funds during the given period sums up to over Rs 100 crore.
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Senior Supreme Court advocate Prashant Bhushan had filed a petition in the apex court alleging a ‘cover-up’ following raids conducted by the Income Tax Department against Aditya Birla Group companies in October 2013 and on the Sahara India Group in November 2014. In October 2016, Bhushan had sent his complaint to all investigating agencies and the two retired judges who were leading the Special Investigating Team (SIT) on black money.
The Indian Express also claimed that the officials in the SIT, who might have spoken to Finance Ministry officials, have reportedly been informed that some pages of the document that had entries of the received payment could be ‘doctored’.
Commenting on the above stated allegation of covering up the suspects, an official from the SIT said that they have been informed that Birla case is going through its usual course of assessment and appeal; also some part of the documents collected during the raid of Sahara Group could have been doctored, but also indicated that doing this is not under their jurisdiction and thus, they have not made any new intervention.