Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Adani Group, BJP deny allegations

New Delhi: Rejecting the allegations, Adani Group spokesperson said they deny “all allegations/statements made by Arvind Kejriwal of AAP” against them. 
    BJP too dismissed the charge as “motivated and mischievous”, with sources pointing to their old thesis that Kejriwal-Bhushan had been attacking BJP figures only to fend off the perception of being biased against Congress. 
    The allegations from the activist-duo, who have frequently been accused by Congress of being BJP’s proxies, came just over a week before the first phase of polling for Gujarat assembly, and marked an assault on Modi’s attempt to showcase himself as Mr Clean who was committed to the welfare of 6 crore Gujaratis. 
    It also tied in with Congress’s charge of crony capitalism against the Gujarat CM. Yet Congress, always ready to pounce upon Modi, chose to keep a distance from the activists’ volley against the CM. Sources attributed the rare reticence to the party’s wariness of Kejriwal-Bhushan, considering that Congress has borne the brunt of their attack. 
    Jubilant Energy (a subsidiary of Jubilant Enpro) rejected the allegation that it was favoured by Modi. “Jubilant Energy won this block under international competitive bidding under the third round of New Exploration Licencing Policy of the government of India. Jubilant Energy is a partner in the block and pays fully for its 10% share of expenditure,” the company said in a statement. 
    “Jubilant is the original partner in this block along with Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation Ltd (GSPC) as the operator of the block. This block was awarded by the government of India along with 22 other blocks at the same time to various parties, both PSUs and private sector. This block was originally an exploration block and the first discovery in this block was made much later in 2005,” it added. 
    The Adani group too dismissed the allegations. "The land for Special Economic Zone at Mundra was allotted following the process of law. The allegation related to coal supply by GMDC is baseless. Till date we have not received any coal from GMDC. These baseless allegations seem to be motivated and lack deeper understanding of the matter. They do not merit further response,” the group spokesperson said. 
    Kejriwal and Bhushan accused the Gujarat chief minister also of allocating prime land in Gandhinagar for MPs and MLAs who in turn sold it at higher prices, as well as of allocations in Kutch to the Adanis at "throwaway" prices. The same government asked for eight times the market price when the Indian Air Force approached it for land. 
    Alleging that Modi bought Congress silence by giving largesse to the opposition, Kejriwal said the state government had allotted plots to its MPs and MLAs in prime areas of Gandhinagar but most of them sold these plots at much higher rates. 
    "The upcoming election in Gujarat is a sham. It will be business as usual. Nothing is going to change. BJP and Congress are joint business partners. It is unfortunate that there is no alternative," Kejriwal said, demanding that the expenditure on advertisements issued during the poll campaign should be made public. 
    Kejriwal also claimed that Gujarat IPS officer Sanjeev Bhatt, whose wife is contesting against Modi on a Congress ticket, gave him "some documents" regarding gas field allocations and Adanis but wondered why he or his wife did not raise the matter or give it to Congress. 
    Seeking to corner Modi for his alleged links with the Adanis, Kejriwal alleged that he overlooked Gujarat Mineral Development Corporation's (GMDC) offer to sell electricity at Rs 2.25 per unit and entered into two long-term agreements with the group to buy power at Rs 2.35 and Rs 2.89 per unit. The AAP members alleged that Adanis cornered 50% coal supply from Naini blocks and then subsequently cancelled the contract. Modi finally agreed to renew the contract with Adani supply power at Rs 5.5 per unit.