Senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi on Wednesday refused to buy the defence of Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Tejaswi Prasad Yadav that he was a minor “without a moustache” at the time of the land-for-hotels deal. “When Tejaswi Yadav became the owner of the property, he had turned an adult with a moustache and a beard,” he said in a statement here.
“He cannot put a veil on his crime by pleading that he was a minor at that time,” added Modi. The BJP leader claimed that the Kochhar brothers had sold a commercial property on February 25, 2005 in the form of a three-acre land in Patna, through 10 sale deeds for Rs 1.47 crore, to Delight Marketing, in which Sarla Gupta, the wife of former Union minister Prem Chand Gupta, was a director.
After the tender was awarded to Sujata Hotel, owned by the Kocchars, the ownership of Delight Marketing also changed hands from Sarla Gupta to Rabri Devi and Tejaswi Yadav between 2010 and 2014, he alleged. Modi dared Tejaswi to announce that he did not own the said land, on which Bihar’s biggest mall was coming up.
“Tejaswi should also announce that he does not own a four-storied building at New Friends Colony in Delhi, the value of which is Rs 115 crore today,” he said. The BJP leader once again urged Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to sack Tejaswi.
“When Tejaswi Yadav and his family have refused to resign, should the CM not show the courage to sack him?,” he wondered. Bihar BJP chief Nityanand Rai also dismissed Tejaswi’s defence of being a minor at the time of the land deal and alleged that he was putting the blame on his father (RJD supremo Lalu Prasad).
Earlier in the day, Tejaswi virtually ruled out the possibility of resigning from the state cabinet and dubbed the FIR against him as a part of a “political vendetta”. “The FIR (in the land-for-hotels case) is part of a political vendetta. BJP president Amit Shah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi are conspiring against me and my family members because of political reasons,” he told reporters. “Can you believe that a 14-year-old child, whose moustache is yet to come, will indulge in corruption?,” he asked and dubbed the FIR as a “farzi” (fake) one.