What's Adani's relation with PM Modi: Rahul Gandhi in Parliament
Underlining billionaire Gautam Adani's meteoric rise over the last eight years under Prime Minister Narendra Modi's rule, Congress MP Rahul Gandhi, in his address in Lok Sabha, questioned the relationship between the two. He alleged the government bent the rules, including India's foreign policy, to facilitate Adani's entry into different sectors. Moreover, he targeted the Centre's Agnipath scheme, which sanctioned ad hoc military recruitment.
Why does this story matter?
- The Budget Session is underway in Parliament, and the Opposition is trying to corner the government over the recent allegations of unprecedented fraud and stock manipulation against Adani's conglomerate.
- Along with Adani Group, the share prices of government-owned Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) and State Bank of India (SBI) have also plunged significantly.
- Both the public sector undertakings have a stake in Adani's conglomerate.
Government hijacked Mumbai airport, gave it to Adani: Gandhi
Gandhi said that after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) assumed power in 2014, the rule that only those with airport experience could develop them was modified, and six airports were allocated to Adani. He alleged India's most profitable airport—Mumbai airport—was hijacked from GVK Group using government agencies such as the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and given to Adani.
How much money did Adani give to BJP: Gandhi
Gandhi questioned how Adani's net worth surged from $8 billion to $140 billion between 2014 and 2022 and how much money Adani gave to the BJP in the last 20 years. "How many times Adaniji reached you after you landed in a foreign country? How many times Adaniji bagged a contract in a foreign country after your visit there?" he asked PM Modi.
Agnipath scheme came from RSS, not Army
Talking about his experience from the Congress's recently concluded Bharat Jodo Yatra, Gandhi said senior military officers told him the Agnipath scheme didn't come from the indian Army but from the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). He also alleged that the government gave the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited's (HAL) contract of 126 aircraft to Anil Ambani.