AAP challenges BJP to arrest Babanrao Lonikar and make him tour all the educational institutions from where he obtained degrees.
Even though the BJP government at the centre is attacking the Aam Aadmi Party over charges levelled against Law Minister Jitendra Singh Tomar but allegations are being raised over the saffron party’s cabinet rank minister in state Babanrao Lonikar for furnishing fake degrees. Congress criticised the BJP’s double standards and asked it first set its house in order before pointing fingers against other parties. AAP dared the BJP to arrest Lonikar and make him tour all the educational institutions from where he obtained degrees.
AAP state executive committee member Ravi Srivastava said, “The matter is going to come up for hearing on July 5. If Tomar’s documents are found to be false then the party will expel him. We have filed an affidavit against Minister for Water Resources Babanrao Lonikar and sent a copy to Chief Election officer.”
“Mr Lonikar had submitted sworn affidavits with regard to his educational qualification while filing his nomination for Assembly Election during 2004, 2009 and 2014. While filing his nomination in 2004 Lonikar mentioned that he completed B.A Part I in 1991. In 2009, he provided the same information. However, while filing his nomination in 2014 he mentioned that he passed his 5th standard in 1973. Thus that Lonikar has falsely stated his educational qualification and misled the Election Commission” he added.
Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant had produced copies of Lonikar’s affidavits and said, “Lonikar in his affidavits of 2004 and 2009 mentioned his qualification as FYBA from Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University (YCMOU) in 1991.
“However, in 2014 election affidavit, he mentioned he has completed his education till Standard 5 from Zilla Parishad School at Loni (Khurd) in Partur Tehsil of Parbhani district in 1973,” he had said.
“I dare the state government to follow the same procedure as our minister (Jitendra Tomar) was put through in Delhi. Will this government arrest him (Lonikar) and make him tour the colleges and universities from where he has received his degrees,?” asked Preeti Sharma Menon, national spokesperson of AAP.
“Lonikar’s fake degree is a proof of the double standards of BJP and (Narendra) Modi government which is indulging in political vendetta,” she said.
Earlier Law Minister Jitendra Singh Tomar was booked under Sections pertaining to cheating and fraud after a university from Bhagalpur in Bihar submitted to a city court that he was not on its student rolls despite having a degree seemingly issued by it. Tomar has been taken to Bihar in his university for verification of his degrees. Police say that he could be part of a big racket which they are keen on busting.
Senior Journalist, Punya Prasun Bajpai mentioned in his blog, “The manner in which the Delhi Police had completed this investigation has set an example for the police department of other states to follow. Many times legislators are not punished due to the snail paced investigation and judicial system. However, if police speeds up the investigation process then action can be taken against many legislators who are facing corruption charges.”
“Today there is around 185 tainted MPs in the Lok Sabha while 40 corrupt MPs exist in Rajya Sabha. If the respective states act against these tainted MP’s then it will drastically reduce corruption and pave way for clean governance. MPs should be made accountable to the people who have elected them. Tainted legislators not only exist in Delhi but in other states too. When are the police going to arrest them?”
BJP party workers replied to Bajpai’s post on social media and said people should file an FIR against Lonikar and a probe can be conducted to ascertain whether he is guilty. They also asked people to file PIL which makes it a tedious process to seek justice and prolong investigation.