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Monday, June 23, 2008

UPA misusing central agencies for political vendetta

By Sangeet Verma

The intelligence officers were silent when questioned about almost negligible or low-level security provided to BJP ministers in Madhya Pradesh that is now on the top list of terrorist outfits.

After being routed from almost all parts of the country, and led by a Congress desperate to assert its image of a national party, the UPA government is misusing the tools of governance in every possible manner to win the next assembly elections in the four states of Rajasthan, Delhi, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.


During the UPA regime at the Centre, the opposition leaders have been targeted with agencies like CBI, IB and EOW, while the same agencies have been used to shape larger than life images of Congress leaders. Central government offices have been used to shower benefits on all those who keep singing praises in honour of members of the Gandhi family. At the same time, records of the BJP leaders and supporters have been put under the scanner and help from loyal bureaucrats is being sought to frame and hit at any possible BJP leader or opportunity. The recent income tax raids in Madhya Pradesh are only indications of 10 Janpath’s ‘democratic’ approach to the coming elections. During the raids conducted at 56 places, less than Rs. 1 crore in cash was seized. When questioned in the press conference on the involvement of the BJP state health minister Ajay Vishnoi, Shri A.K. Rana, Director General (Income Tax) and Shri A.K. Singh, Director, (Investigations) said that the houses or offices of the health minister were not raided and they don’t know why he has resigned. What is also surprising is the fact that Shri Vishnoi has no cases pending against him in either Lokayukt, Income Tax, Economic Offences Wing or even any FIR or PIL against him in any court of law.

What is less surprising and more funny is the fact that his resignation was sought by Congress, which has a record of not just corrupt but also convicted ministers who were convicted while in office for the first time in the history of the country.

It is little surprise then, that after being routed from almost all parts of the country, and led by a Congress desperate to assert its image of a national party, the UPA government is misusing the tools of governance in every possible manner to win the next assembly elections in the four states of Rajasthan, Delhi, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. The problem is that the Congress is yet to realise two facts:

1. The era of personal worship in Indian politics is over, at least among the masses.

2. That the Congress is no more a national party with a national presence and is now lame and dependent on regional parties for its survival.

The strategy is very clear. All Congressmen have been asked to convert Rahul Gandhi into a worshipable icon for the masses. Those in the line for worship include senior leaders like Arjun Singh, Mani Shankar Aiyar and Shivraj Patil. Also, a similar approach is being adopted at the state level, decorating the Congress chief minister aspirants with royal artillery.

One such funny example is the case of Suresh Pachori in Madhya Pradesh. Suresh Pachori is less known, an aspiring CM candidate from Congress who also has blessings from 10 Janpath. It is these blessings that have earned him a Z plus security cover which few in the intelligence circles could resist smiling at. A senior intelligence officer on conditions of anonymity said that the security provided to Shri Pachori was a surprise as the state government found no security threats to make him eligible for even the lowest category of security in its regular reviews. Another senior official said that usually all state governments honour the security grades provided by other states and since Shri Pachori had earned his security grades from the Central government, it was the moral duty of the Madhya Pradesh government to honour it even if it understood well that there was no real threat to Shri Pachori.

However the intelligence officers were silent when questioned about almost negligible or low-level security provided to BJP ministers in Madhya Pradesh that is now on the top list of terrorist outfits. Be it erasing dacoit names like Gujjar, Gadaria and Parihar in the Chambals or breaking the back-bone of SIMI by arresting its top leaders, the credit largely goes to the state home minister Himmat Singh Kothari, who can still be seen driving a two wheeler in his constituency with a single guard to back him up. None of the other ministers in the state have a Z category security cover. The silence of intelligence department to the issue is the most surprising.

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