A prominent politician who was an important minister in the UPA Government is set to be colluding with financial agencies to engineer a meltdown stock market prices by October this year. The ex-Minister and his “cabal” intend to disturb the stability of the capital markets before the Lok Sabha election to dent the chances of the BJP. This politician had once been described as a “friend, father and philosopher of black money” by lawyer Ram Jethmalani. According to a sensational report by senior journalist Madhav Nalapat in The Sunday Guardian, this former Minister and his cronies had made “at least Rs 39000 crore” through manipulations in the stock market during his tenure as Minister. The Minister and his cabal, including his associates in the financial sector and officials in ministries, have so far remained unscathed for their misdeeds. The officials whom Nalapat spoke to, wondered why the present government had not attempted to pursue this matter and nailed the former Minister or his associates.
Surprisingly, even under the present Government, the former Minister was able to ensure that the officials who connived with him were given important responsibilities. The officials continue to be loyal to the former Minister. A part of the money made by the former Minister and his cabal was routed back to India with the help of certain Hawala operators based in Rajasthan and Punjab. These operators are said to be close to the former Minister. So far, no investigation has been initiated against these operators by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
In other words, it is a severe indictment of the working and control of the Union Government in general and the Finance Ministry in particular. It seems that the ecosystem left behind by the UPA and its Ministers has not been disturbed by the Finance Ministry for the sake of friendship between the two important men who matter.
Like in almost all cases, belling the cat has been left to Prime Minister. While some Ministers in the present Government too, do not seem to be willing to act against the alleged perpetrators of huge scams and those who engineered them in the previous Government, they expect only Prime Minister Narendra Modi to act against the ecosystem while they remain friends with the such ministers.
There are reasons, too, for them to remain friends as the likelihood of both of them getting elected by the people is less. Both are the members of the Upper House. Both have sons to take care of and bequeath their legacy to, both are from the same profession and are part of the Lutyens’ Delhi.
Interestingly, the associates of the former Minister also expect him to become the Prime Minister, if the BJP were to be voted out of power in 2019. The former Minister, who has in the past envisaged himself as the Prime Minister, was also suspected of snooping on the then Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee a few years back.
BJP leader Subramanian Swamy has been consistently vocal against such a lackadaisical approach of the Government. The positive side in the entire matter is that as expected, it is the Prime Minster who looks set to take the bull by its horns. According to an officer who spoke to Madhav Nalapat, there is hope to expect action in future. Recently, some “outstanding” investigating officers have been entrusted responsibility for investigating Hawala channels. Earlier, this year, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had tightened the noose around the former Minister’s son in connection with the money laundering probe. The former Minister himself is suspected of conniving with a television channel to indulge in money laundering.
It is high time that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi takes strict action against such unscrupulous politicians. As it is, almost 4 years have passed and there has not been visible punitive action taken against those responsible for corruption.
They have become brazen and audacious enough to now subvert and sabotage the image of the Government. In the run up to the Lok Sabha election, such politicians could also be shameless enough to cock a snook at the present Government for its perceived failure to act against the corrupt. The Prime Minister must not worry that the people will sympathize with such crooks if action was against them. Such crooks will cry vendetta whenever there any action is taken against them. On the contrary, he fearlessly ensure that punitive action is taken against such crooks. Unfortunately, it is not always enough that a clean Central Government is in power at the Centre. People also want to see the ‘clean’ Government act against the corrupt. Despite compulsions (if any), the PM must ensure that action is seen to be taken by the common people as part of his campaign against corruption and black money.