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‘Perfume of corruption’: PM takes dig at SP over cash seizure from businessman, Akhilesh hits back

India News


Taking a swipe at the Samajwadi Party (SP) on Tuesday over the seizure of Rs 150 crore from a Kanpur-based businessman recently, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said the people of Uttar Pradesh know for a fact that the “perfume of corruption has been sprinkled” all over the state.

“Boxes filled with notes that have come out, I was thinking they (Samajwadi Party) will say that this was also done by us. The people of Kanpur understand business and trade well. Before 2017, the perfume of corruption that they had sprinkled all over Uttar Pradesh is there for everyone to see,” PM Modi said after inaugurating a metro rail project and the 356-km-long Bina-Panki multi-product pipeline project in Kanpur on Tuesday.

He added, “But now, they are sitting with their mouths shut. They are not coming forward to take credit for the mountain of currency notes seen by the entire country. This is their achievement and their reality. The people of Uttar Pradesh are seeing and understanding everything and hence, they are with those who are working to take the state forward.”

Recently, GST authorities seized Rs 150 crore from multiple locations in Kanpur allegedly linked to Piyush Jain, a businessman who deals in pan masala and perfumes.

With UP polls looming, the seizure has triggered a political blame game with the ruling BJP and Opposition SP accusing each other of having dubious links with Jain.

PM Modi also accused the political parties that ruled Uttar Pradesh in the past of spreading crime, which ruined all the businesses in the most populous state of the country.

“Political parties with a policy of corruption and honouring bahubalis cannot develop Uttar Pradesh. Therefore, they have a problem with every move that strengthens the society. They also oppose moves that are aimed at empowering women, whether stern laws against triple talaq or bringing the age of marriage for women at par with men,” he said in an apparent dig at the SP, which ruled the state from 2012 to 2017.

Modi also said the opposition parties claim credit for the projects conceived and implemented by the current government. Citing various projects like the Kanpur Metro and the Purvanchal Expressway, he claimed that the BJP government laid the foundation stones as well as inaugurated those.

Narendra Modi Supporters hold cut-outs of Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a programme to launch a section of Kanpur metro line, in Kanpur, Tuesday (PTI)

On Tuesday, Modi inaugurated the nine-km-long completed section of the Kanpur Metro Rail Project from IIT-Kanpur to Moti Jheel as well as the 356-km-long Bina-Panki project that has a capacity of around 3.45 million metric ton per annum. He also inspected the Kanpur Metro Rail Project and undertook a metro ride from the IIT metro station to Geeta Nagar. He also addressed the 54th convocation ceremony of Indian Institute of Technology-Kanpur

Modi said before 2014, metro trains used to run for a distance of only nine kilometres in Uttar Pradesh. It went up to 18 kilometres between 2014 and 2017, he said, adding that with the inauguration of the Kanpur Metro, the distance covered by metro trains in the state is now more than 90 kilometres.

Highlighting the difference in the working styles of the present and the previous governments in the country, the Prime Minister said before 2014, only five metro cities had metro trains but now, five cities in Uttar Pradesh alone have the facility and work is on in 27 more cities across the country.

The “double-engine” government has given momentum in Uttar Pradesh, he said, in a reference to the BJP being in power both in the state and at the Centre, and stressed the importance of a balanced development across the country. “We are giving a special emphasis to those who were never given importance earlier,” Modi said and cited a number of schemes being implemented for the benefit of people from all walks of life.

Meanwhile, SP president Akhilesh Yadav on Tuesday categorically denied any links between his party and Kanpur-based perfume trader Piyush Jain, and mockingly said the BJP got “its own businessman” raided “by mistake”.

He also said the CDR (call detail record) of the businessman’s phone would reveal the names of several BJP leaders who were in touch with him. “By mistake, the BJP got its own businessman raided. Instead of SP leader Pushpraj Jain, it got Piyush Jain raided,” Yadav told reporters.

He also claimed that Samajwadi Attar (perfume) was launched by SP MLC Pushpraj Jain and not Piyush Jain. Taking a swipe at the ruling BJP, the former Uttar Pradesh chief minister said, “In a digital mistake, it got its own businessman raided.”

(With PTI inputs)





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