Congress members today disrupted the proceedings in Parliament today protesting the IT raids against a Karnataka Minister, as Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told them not to link the searches with Rajya Sabha polls in Gujarat.
Jaitley, who spoke on the issue in both Houses of Parliament, also said no search operation was conducted at the resort in Karnataka where Gujarat Congress MLAs have been staying.
However, the Minister, who had “gone and parked himself” at the resort, was picked up from there for questioning, he said as Congress members vociferously raised the issue in both the Houses. They forced three adjournments of the Rajya Sabha and staged a walkout from the Lok Sabha.
As the Congress members charged the government with using investigating agencies like CBI, ED and IT, Jaitley said “whether it is a use or abuse, it depends of recovery”.
Maintaining that the searches were being conducted at 39 other places and “not at this resort”, Jaitley said the searches “should not be linked to the Rajya Sabha election in Gujarat.”
As the Upper House met for the day, Congress leader Anand Sharma raised the issue, saying an attempt was being made to “derail and hijack” the elections to the Council of States and the raids were “targetted”.
“Since morning they (ED and IT) have started the raids,” Sharma said and questioned the timing and place of the raids.
In the Lok Sabha, senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge raised the issue, but Jaitley said the matter should not linked to the polls in Gujarat for Rajya Sabha seats.
Terming the raids as “a political vendetta and witch- hunting”, Kharge accused the government of using central agencies and said this would “ruin the ethos of democracy.”
Kharge later led a walkout of the Congress members from the Lok Sabha.