Smriti Irani Slams Congress’ 'Hawala Link', Alleges Mahadev App Money Used For Election Campaign
Union Minister Smriti Irani accused the Chhattisgarh Congress leaders of taking election funds from Asim Das, who works for the Mahadev app promoters, who're sitting offshores.
New Delhi: Union Minister Smriti Irani revealed that the Congress was using hawala money brought by illegal betting operators to fund its poll campaign in Chhattisgarh as she targeted Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel over the allegation that he received over Rs 500 crore kickback. She said that this was the first time in the electoral history that such evidence had come to light. She accused Baghel of fighting the polls with the help of hawala and betting operators instead of the people’s support.
“He has played the game of betting while being in power,” she said, attacking Baghel. The chief minister has hit back at the BJP, saying that it was using central investigation agencies to harass him ahead of the assembly polls in the state on November 7 and 17.
Irani countered him, saying that the Enforcement Directorate’s probe was based on the findings of the police in Chhattisgarh as well as Andhra Pradesh. She asked if Baghel was doubting his own government.
She said that the probe had revealed that more than Rs 64 crore protection money was also paid to authorities by illegal betting operators. She said that there were voice messages and statements of the accused that linked the use of betting money for funding the Congress’ campaign in the state and kickbacks given to Baghel.
She said that the ED had claimed on Friday that a forensic analysis and a statement made by a ‘cash courier’ had led to “startling allegations” that Mahadev betting app promoters had paid about Rs 508 crore to the Chhattisgarh chief minister so far, and that “these are subject matter of investigation”.