New Delhi: Union Minister for Rural Development, Jairam Ramesh's finds a parallel in BJP’s PM aspirant Narendra Modi and the infamous self styled Preacher Asaram who is behind bars under rape charges.
Modi had taunted upon Congress, which is pushing the Lokpal Bill in the Parliament and questioned why the UPA Government is shying away from implementing Lokayukta Act brought in by the previous BJP government headed by BC Khanduri in Uttarakhand.
Referring Narendra Modi’s remarks, Mr. Ramesh said, “He (Narendra Modi) did not appoint Lokayukta for 10 years. Now giving advice on it, it’s like Asaram talking about virginity.”
The Rural Development Minister’s comment came when media persons asked him about Modi mocking Rahul Gandhi on the issue of Lokpal Bill at a rally in Dehradun yesterday. In his well known style he chided Congress Vice President and said, "A Congress leader was talking about Lokpal at a press conference. My question is how can the leader of a party, which has shied away from the creation of the anti-corruption watchdog so far, be so vocal on the issue. I want to ask him, if his heart really aches for lokpal, why hasn't his party allowed the implementation of the Lok Ayukta Act in Uttarakhand passed by the state assembly during BJP chief minister General (Rtd) Bhuvan Chandra Khanduri's tenure?"
Drafted at a time when Anna Hazare's agitation for a Lokpal Bill was at its peak, on November 1, 2011 after Khanduri took over the reins in the state for a second time in September that year. Though given Presidential assent after a two-year wait in September this year, the act is yet to be implemented. The Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna wants to bring it into force only after certain amendments.
Tearing into the Vijay Bahuguna government for failing to implement Lokayukta, Modi asked, "How can you expect a state government bent on encouraging corruption to enforce Lokayukta?"
Ramesh has questioned Modi’s moral right on his comment, as his government in Gujarat has stalled appointment of Lok Ayukta for a decade.
Drawing analogy with the disgraced self-styled Hindu Dharam Parcharak, irked BJP. Party spokesperson and Rajya Sabha MP Prakash Javadekar said, “Condemn Jairam Ramesh's dirty remark on Narendra Modi, it’s shameful.”
Asaram had many admirers in BJP. He shared dais with senior party leaders like L.K.Advani and Sushma Sawaraj. Now party leaders abandoned him since he is facing charges of sexual assault on a minor girl and of running a racket of flesh trade in his Ashrams. However Party Rajya Sabha M.P. Ramjeth Malani appeared in the court to defend him.
His son Narayan Sai is also in police custody and has reportedly accepted his sins. He admitted to having physical relations with at least ten women, who came to their Ashram in good faith in search of inner solace and religious guidance. Both father and son have also been described as a ‘womanizer’ in the garb of Dharm Guru by their erstwhile followers. Asaram is in judicial custody since September and police claims to have strong evidence against his corrupt sexual behavior.
Narayan Sai was arrested last Tuesday midnight after a two-month chase by Delhi Police along with his aides near the Delhi border while trying to enter the national capital from Haryana disguised as a Sikh man. Over Rs. One Crore was recovered in cash from his Car. In a related development Surat police on Friday arrested six persons, including a Sub-Inspector of Surat city Crime Branch, a supermarket mall owner and Asaram’s Ashram Sanchalaks, for allegedly attempting to weaken the Narayan Sai sexual assault case by offering bribes. Police also seized Rs 8 crore in cash and eight mobile phones from the suspects.
Police said those detained were part of a conspiracy, allegedly hatched by Sai from his prison cell, and the seized money was meant for bribing senior police officers of Gujarat, members of the judiciary, doctors and officials of government hospital associated with the case.