Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao's daughter K Kavitha asserted on Thursday that questioning by any central investigative agency is equivalent to being questioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In an exclusive interview to NDTV, Ms Kavitha -- soon to be questioned in the alleged liquor policy scam in Delhi -- said while the onus is on her to prove that she has done no wrong, "how can I fight the entire system".
The central investigation agencies have alleged that Ms Kavitha is part of the liquor lobby they dubbed the "South cartel" that benefited from the kickbacks in the now withdrawn liquor policy of Delhi, over which Aam Aadmi Party leader Manish Sisodia has been arrested.
She was questioned by the Central Bureau of Investigation in December. Now the Enforcement Directorate has summoned her for questioning, which will take place on March 11.
"In India, there's no difference between Enforcement Directorate summons and Modi's summons... It is a practice now wherever there's an election, before PM, the Enforcement Directorate comes. What can the Opposition do? Go to people's court or the Supreme Court," alleged the Bharat Rashtra Samithi MLC.
Ms Kavitha had sought a deferment of the questioning which was expected to take place today, citing a protest meet she is attending in Delhi. The fresh date given was March 11.
The 44-year-old alleged that the BJP is trying to "intimidate my leader" -- her father Mr Rao, who is hoping for a third consecutive term in power in the state, where assembly elections are due in a few months.
Ms Kavitha's former accountant has been arrested in the alleged liquor scam. The CBI contends that liquor companies were involved in the framing of the 2021 excise policy of Delhi, for which kickbacks to the tune of Rs 30 crore were paid by the "South Cartel".
The Telangana leader has been called so that she can be confronted with arrested Hyderabad-based businessman Arun Ramchandran Pillai, who was alleged to be the frontman of the "South Cartel", news agency Press Trust of India has reported, quoting unnamed sources.