Poll Body's Directive On I-T Raids Is ''Too Little, Too Late'': Congress

Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala alleged that the Narendra Modi government was being blinded by hatred and revenge in the manner its probe agencies were acting against BJP's political opponents.

Poll Body's Directive On I-T Raids Is ''Too Little, Too Late'': Congress

Randeep Surjewala accused the government of being "blinded by rage, hatred and revenge".

New Delhi:

The Congress Monday termed the Election Commission's directive to the I-T Department on raids carried out during poll time as "too little, too late" and hoped it will take decisive action against "prejudiced officers" of I-T and Enforcement Directorate trying to "bulldoze and intimidate" political opponents.

Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala alleged that the Narendra Modi government was being blinded by hatred and revenge in the manner its probe agencies were acting against BJP's political opponents.

He claimed there were four people campaigning for the BJP -- Prime Minister Modi, BJP chief Amit Shah, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

"The Election Commission's action is too little, too late. We are happy that they have finally taken note of their responsibility of superintendence and conduct of election under Article 324 of Constitution of India.

"We do hope that the Election Commission will take decisive action against the patently prejudiced officers of Income Tax Department and the ED who are trying to bulldoze and intimidate political opponents," he told reporters.

Mr Surjewala accused the government of being "blinded by rage, hatred and revenge". The manner in which the Income Tax Department, ED, CBI and now even paramilitary personnel are being used in an extra-constitutional manner to violate the federal structure and jurisdictions of the state is "unpardonable and shameful", he alleged.

"It is unacceptable as per every legal and constitutional norm. That''s why we said there are only four people now campaigning for the BJP. One is Narendra Modi ji, Amit Shah ji, ED ji and CBI ji.

"That''s why you find a failed prime minister alone even on top of a failed manifesto which has become a useless piece of paper to be rejected for what it is," the Congress leader claimed.

Congress leader Ahmed Patel asked why there were "selective raids" and why action was not being initiated by probe agencies against BJP leaders.

"Why are selective raids being conducted? Everyone knows who has more money. Why is no action being initiated against BJP leaders whose files are pending with probe agencies. Is the prime minister only spying on its opponents," he asked.

The Election Commission Sunday "strongly advised" the Finance Ministry that any action by its enforcement agencies during election time should be "neutral" and "non-discriminatory" and officials of the poll panel should be kept in loop about such actions.

Its advice came against the backdrop of Income Tax Department's raids in Madhya Pradesh Sunday and in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh in the recent past on politicians and people connected to them.

The department conducted raids against close aides of Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath and others on Sunday that continued on Monday, with search teams making seizures of documents and cash, officials said.

The searches on charges of alleged tax evasion and hawala transactions during the ongoing poll season, the official said, are continuing at various premises in Bhopal, Indore and in Delhi and the National Capital Region as tax sleuths are gathering details and evidence.

While there is no official word on the exact amount of cash seized, sources said over Rs 10 crore suspected cash has been seized till now.

Since the Model Code Conduct came into force on March 10, the I-T Department has carried out several raids on political leaders and their associates which the opposition has dubbed a misuse of central agencies during poll season.

There have been nearly 55 raids in the recent past by agencies under the Finance Ministry.

The poll panel's advice came amid allegations that the government was using the agencies to target rival parties in the election season.

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