This is Congress party's Nawaz Sharif moment: BJP

Congress Nawaz Sharif Moment: Nirmala Sitharaman On I-T Cases Against P Chidambaram

In a press conference held earlier in the day over the Income Tax Department's chargesheet against Chidambaram for alleged non-disclosure of assets held overseas, defence minister Sitharaman asked if Congress President Rahul Gandhi will probe the matter against one of his senior colleagues.

She referred to Nawaz Sharif, who was debarred from holding public office by Pakistan's Supreme Court due to non-disclosure of assets and income earned overseas.

To a question whether the Congress would ally with the JD (S) to form the government in case of a hung assembly, he said, "That situation will not arise, I can promise you that". She called it the "Nawaz Sharif moment" of the Congress party.

Four criminal complaints were filed on Saturday, by the tax department before a special court in Chennai under black money and undisclosed foreign income laws.

Sitharaman wondered if Congress President Rahul Gandhi would follow suit in Chidambaram's case.

She further added that, "The Congress party president, who is also out on bail on some financial transactions which are questionable, should certainly comment and tell the entire party and people of India whether he is going to investigate this".


She pointed out that the Pakistan Supreme Court had disqualified Sharif from holding office because of not disclosing assets held in foreign countries.

Sitharaman alleged, Chidambaram didn't disclose his investments to tax authorities, violating black money law, which was brought by Modi government as part of its drive against black money and to prosecute those Indians who have secretly stashed illicit wealth overseas. The former Finance Minister taunted that the "buzz in Delhi" was that Sitharaman was soon going to be appointed a lawyer for the Income Tax department.

As Sitharaman read out the charges against Chidambaram, the latter in a sarcastic Twitter jibe said she should be appointed as "lawyer of the income tax department". "Welcome to the bar, Sitharaman", tweeted Chidmabaram. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text.

BJP national president Amit Shah also upped the attack on former finance minister saying IT had estimated illegal assets held by Chidambaram to be worth 3 billion dollars. "IT estimates illegal assets held by UPA's FM to be to the tune of 3 Bn dollars!", Mr. Shah tweeted. "Bring the money back and put Rs 15 lakh in the account of every Indian as you promised". "How could they indict their own selves", Shah said in his second Tweet.

"When will the Prime Minister and the Defence Minister respond to the Rs 58,000 crore Rafale scam?" Congress Spokesman Pawan Khera said. "The Defence Minister should tell us first what has she done in this regard?" The charge sheets are expected to be taken up by the court on June 11. "The returns of income are a complete answer to the baseless allegation", he said, quoting the statement of Chidambaram's chartered accountant.

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