Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad Tuesday said Congress president Rahul Gandhi does not have the “moral right” to challenge Prime Minister Narendra Modi to a debate on corruption as he is himself facing a corruption case and is on bail.
“He (Rahul) is himself on bail, his mother (Sonia Gandhi) and his brother-in-law (Robert Vadra) are also on bail (in corruption cases). He should first explain about the corruption charges he is facing (in the National Herald case).
“You dont have the moral right and conduct to talk on the honesty and integrity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Our government has worked honestly in the past five years,” Prasad said, and referred to the seizure of crores of rupees during Income Tax raids on a close aide of Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath.
In a tweet on Tuesday, Gandhi dared Modi to a debate with him on corruption.
Dear PM, Scared of debating me on corruption? I can make it easier for you. Lets go open book, so you can prepare: 1. RAFALE+Anil Ambani 2. Nirav Modi 3. Amit Shah+Demonetisation, Gandhi tweeted.
Prasad, the Union law minister, was talking to reporters at Patna after releasing the BJP’s manifesto–Sankalp Patra.
Top party leaders, including Modi, had released the manifesto in the national capital on Monday.
On Ram temple, the minister said the BJP government will make all efforts required for it within the framework of the Constitution.
“Ram temple is not our poll plank. It is a matter of faith and pride. A grand Ram temple will be constructed within the framework of the Constitution. We have been demanding an early decision on Ram temple in the case which is pending in the Supreme Court,” the minister said.
When asked why the BJP government did not scrap Article 35A of the Constitution that empowers the Jammu and Kashmir legislature to define permanent resident of the state and provide them special rights and privileges, Prasad said it could not be done as the NDA did not have a majority in the Rajya Sabha.
Responding to a query on ally JD(U) having reservations over some issues dear to the BJP like abrogation of Article 370 and Article 35 A, he said, “We (BJP) are a part of the NDA but we have our separate identity as a party too which has its own constitution.”
He refused to comment on the CBI telling the apex court that RJD supremo Lalu Prasad is likely to get involved in political activities and misuse the bail if released ahead of the Lok Sabha polls since the matter was sub-judice. PTI