‘The Congress Doesn’t Spare The Guilty. Kalmadi Is A Good Example’


Congress spokesman Shakeel Ahmad tells Kunal Majumder that it is for the courts to decide on a Raja’s allegations

Congress spokesman, Shakeel Ahmad
Congress spokesman, Shakeel Ahmad, Photo: Vijay Pandey

Why does the Congress always raise the issue of Hindu terror whenever it is cornered? Digvijaya Singh did it after the recent Mumbai blasts. P Chidambaram did it after being named by A Raja in the 2G scam case.
There is nothing like Hindu or Muslim terror. However, there is plenty of evidence that a number of organisations and people with links to the RSS are involved in terror activities. We call this Sanghi terrorism. On 13 July, a reporter asked Digvijaya Singh whether he was excluding RSS involvement in the Mumbai blasts. He replied that nobody will be ruled out until and unless an investigation agency gives them a clean chit. What’s wrong with that statement? As Union Home Minister, Chidambaram must have seen enough evidence to make such a claim.

Time and again, Raja has claimed that the prime minister knew about the 2G licence allotments. Now he has named Chidambaram as well. How long can the Congress keep evading responsibility in the 2G spectrum scam?
It’s for the SC to take a call. It will look into why he never mentioned Chidambaram before. It will also try to find out if there is any prima facie evidence in the allegation.

As a former minister of state who worked under Dayanidhi Maran and Raja, do you buy any of Raja’s arguments that all telecom ministers should be put in the dock?
I worked with Maran as well as Raja until April 2008. The 2G licence issue was finalised in January 2008. As far as my involvement is concerned, both Maran and Raja did not issue any work related to spectrum allocation or 2G licences to me. That’s why I’m not involved in the ongoing 2G case.

Are you saying that you had no clue about what was happening in your own ministry?
It would be improper for me to comment.

The Congress has been quick to demand the resignation of Karnataka CM BS Yeddyurappa in the illegal mining scam. But what about External Affairs Minister SM Krishna and Congress MP Anil Lad who are also allegedly named?
The media has clarified that Krishna’s name doesn’t figure in the Lokayukta’s report. We have maintained that the law will take its own course. But Yeddyurappa is a chief minister and he holds a public post. The party’s Karnataka in-charge Shanta Kumar complained to the BJP high command that Yeddyurappa and his family are involved in corruption. Instead of asking the chief minister to quit, the party has removed Shanta Kumar from his post.

After the Lokayukta’s report is made public, will you take action against the Congressmen whose names figure in it?
The law will take its own course. The Congress will never stand in the way. Look at the case of Suresh Kalmadi. The law took its own course and now he is behind bars.

But what about Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit who has been hauled up the Lokayukta?
What did the Lokayukta say against Sheila Dikshit? That she had promised she will give a certain number of houses to the poor and she couldn’t keep that promise. It is not for the Lokayukta but the Election Commission to look into it.

You blame the DMK for the 2G scam, Amar Singh for the cash-for-vote scam and Suresh Kalmadi for the CWG scam. How can the ruling Congress still distance itself from all these?
We never said that Kalmadi is not a Congress member. He is a member and that’s why the Congress asked him to resign from the secretaryship. If anybody is involved in any activity that is detrimental to our party, we will take action.

Kunal Majumder is a Senior Correspondent with Tehelka.



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