BJP linking Michel with us is ‘pot calling kettle black’: Cong

The BJP on Thursday  raked up expulsion of Youth Congress leader and lawyer Aljo K Joseph from the Congress for appearing in a court here for Michel, who was extradited from Dubai on Tuesday for allegedly being the middleman in the UPA era Rs 3,600 crore VVIP helicopter deal.

BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said the Congress may have expelled Joseph but he remains a lawyer for the accused as “10 Janpath”, the residence of UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, wants its own people to be in touch with Michel.

Besides Joseph, one of the lawyers defending Michel is a member of the Congress’ youth wing while the father of another is a party member, Patra claimed at a press conference. “Isn’t this too much of an coincidence? Isn’t the extended hand of the Congress was working to protect the family?” he asked, adding that it is a clever move by the party to ensure that Michel is protected.

He said the Congress had earlier also acted against its leaders like Mani Shankar Aiyar and Sandeep Dikshit but “promoted” them later.

Questioned about the lawyer kin of some top BJP leaders appearing for those accused of corruption, said they did not only recuse themselves but also returned the fee paid to them. It showed the clean conscience of BJP leaders while the Congress is “married to corruption”, he said.

Congress spokesperson Jaiveer Shergill hit back alleging that the BJP is a “one stop shop which provides full service to fraudsters and scamsters by acting as their advisors, lawyers, boarding pass agents, ticket agents, establishing in London agents and police protection agents”. “The BJP linking the Congress party with AgustaWestland on the basis of an expelled Congress lawyer is a classic case of pot calling the kettle black,” he said.

According to Shergill, if the BJP was linking the Congress with Michel on the basis of a lawyer, they should answer on Finance minister Arun Jaitley’s family members taking fees from PNB scam accused Nirav Modi, Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad representing Subrata Roy and Vasundhara Raje giving an affidavit in favour of Lalit Modi in London. The BJP must also give an answer on Jaitley representing stock broker Ketan Parekh, he said.

British businessman Michel was sent to CBI custody for five days by a Delhi court on Wednesday, a day after he was extradited to India from the UAE.