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regular-article-logo Saturday, 15 June 2024

My Adani-Ambani remark validated by Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury: PM Modi

'For the past few years, the main campaign plank of Congress' 'shehzada' (prince) had been singing the same tune about two people. And suddenly, as the election began, the main campaign plank has shifted. Why this sudden change?'

PTI Bhubaneswar Published 20.05.24, 04:28 PM
Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. PTI picture.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said the battle against corruption is a serious one and the probe agencies must be allowed to do their work without interference.

In an interview with PTI, he also asserted that his 'Adani-Ambani' remark has been validated by senior Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury when he "admitted" that he will not speak against Adani-Ambani if they send "tempo-loads of money".

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Prime Minister Modi had on May 8 for the first time during the Lok Sabha elections accused the Congress of having a nexus with "Ambani and Adani", and asked if the party has received "tempo loads of black money" from the two businessmen for its leader Rahul Gandhi to stop "abusing" them.

Asked about the remark which had taken people by surprise, Modi told PTI, "For the past few years, the main campaign plank of Congress' 'shehzada' (prince) had been singing the same tune about two people. And suddenly, as the election began, the main campaign plank has shifted. Why this sudden change?" "My point was instantly validated by none other than the leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha. Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury admitted that if Adani-Ambani sent tempo-loads of money, he would not speak against them," the prime minister said.

He further said as far as the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) are concerned, these are agencies that function independently.

"They have done an excellent job in tackling cases of corruption and black money. Before 2014, the ED attached only Rs 5,000 crore. In my tenure, assets worth Rs 1 lakh crore have been attached. The battle against corruption is a serious one. We must allow our agencies to do their work without interference," Modi said.

In what appeared to be a change in the narrative on the 'Ambani-Adani' issue, which was until now used by the Congress to attack Modi and his government at the Centre, the prime minister had earlier demanded that the party should explain to people why it has stopped raising the issue as its "shehzada" used to do for the past five years and asked if it has struck a "sauda" (deal).

The Congress has been accusing the prime minister of favouring the top five industrialists in the country, including Gautam Adani and Mukesh Ambani.

In an interview to an online platform, Chowdhury was asked that he speaks against Adani and Ambani and he responded by saying, "Yes, I do because they don't send us money. If they send, people (will) become silent." Asked if he would become silent on getting money, Chowdhury nodded with a laugh and said, "First let them send, then we will consider."

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