Hiranandani ‘forced to sign white paper’: Mahua Moitra on ‘Cash for Query’ case

In a two-page statement, Moitra raised a few questions over the credibility of the affidavit that Hiranandani reportedly submitted to the Parliament Ethics committee, claiming that it is “neither on official letterhead nor notarised” and that the contents of the letter are “a joke.”

“The affidavit is on white paper, and not an official letterhead or notarized. Why would one of India’s most respected/educated businessmen sign a letter like this on white paper unless a gun was put on his head to do it?” Mahua said in a press statement.

Also read: TMC MP Mahua Moitra files defamation case against BJP’s Nishikant Dubey amid furore over ‘cash for queries’ claim

“The contents of the letter are a joke. It has clearly been drafted by some half-wit in the PMO who doubles up as a creative writer in the BJP’s IT cell. It sings paeans to Modi and Gautam Adani while linking every opponent of theirs to me and my alleged corruption,” Moitra alleged.

Further, attacking the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the TMC leader said, “Paragraph 12 claims that Darshan gave in to my demands because he was fearful of displeasing me. Darshan and his father run one of India’s largest business groups and their recent projects in UP and Gujarat have been inaugurated by the CM of Uttar Pradesh and by the Prime Minister. Darshan accompanied the PM abroad as part of his business delegation very recently. Why would such a wealthy businessman who enjoys direct access to every minister and the PMO be coerced by a first-time opposition MP into giving her gifts and giving into her demands?”

“It is totally illogical and only cements the truth that the letter was drafted by the PMO and not Darshan”, the TMC MP stated.

Also read: Nishikant Dubey’s allegations on Mahua Moitra: Opposition calls it ‘gimmick’, BJP says ‘need immediate probe’

She further asked businessman Hiranandani why he did not release the letter officially if he had “confessed” to the claims.

“If indeed he was to witness all of my corruption, why was he with me during the time, and why did he wait till now to make it public? Also if he wrote to the CBI and the LS speaker, why out of the 543 MPs would he forward the letter to Nishikant Dubey, whom I have repeatedly exposed in the parliament and the outside and against whom, I have filed pending privilege motions?” she questioned.

Claiming that Businessman Hiranandani was “compelled” to sign the letter, Moitra said, “The PMO held a proverbial gun to Darshan and his father’s heads and gave them 20 minutes to sign this letter sent to them. They were threatened with a total shutdown of all their businesses. They were told they would be finished, the CBI would raid them and all government business would stop and all PSU bank financing would be stopped immediately.”

“The draft of this letter was sent by the PMO and he was forced to sign it. And it was leaked to the press immediately,” she said.

“This is the usual modus operandi of this BJP government or rather Gautam Adani’s government run by the BJP. Every effort is being made to malign me and isolate and scare those near and dear to me,” she alleged.

“I will continue to stand up to Mr Adani until he answers the many questions that he is duty-bound to answer to the people of this great country,” she added.

The face-off between BJP MP Nishikant Dubey and TMC MP Mahua Moitra over his ‘Cash for Query’ allegations has taken a fresh turn.

Hiranandani, who was allegedly behind the said payoffs has for the first time responded in an affidavit.

The businessman said that he resides in Dubai and came across letters dated October 14, by Advocate Jai Anant Dehadrai to the CBI and to BJP MP Nishikant Dubey where his name figured prominently. He says he has been following the events carefully.

In his affidavit, the businessman admits to his friendship with the TMC MP.

“I have known Mahua since I met her at the Bengal summit 2017…..Over a period of time, she has become a close personal friend of mine…However, as our interactions grew over time she asked for odds and ends which involved my time” the affidavit reads

Hiranandani then claims that the TMC MP saw attacking the Adani group as a route to fame.

“She became Lok Sabha MP in May 2019…. She was advised by her friends that the shortest route to fame was by attacking Narendra Modi. She thought that the only way to attack PM Modi was by attacking Gautam Adani and his group as they both come from Gujarat” his affidavit reads.

Hiranandani then claims that Mahua Moitra did share her Parliament Login credentials with him.

“She knew that Indian Oil Corporation was getting into an arrangement with Dhamra LNG a joint venture of the Adani group….. She drafted a few questions that she could raise in parliament that would have elements to embarrass the Govt and target the Adani group. She shared with me her email ID as MP, so I could send her information and she could raise the questions. I went along with her proposal” he claims in his affidavit.

Darshan Hiranandani also claims that he used the TMC MP’s login credentials to pose questions on the Adani group himself.

“She also received unverified details from several sources including some claiming to be former Adani group employees…..Certain information was shared with me, based on which I continued to draft and post questions using her Parliamentary login” he says in his affidavit.

Hiranandani then claims that the TMC MP also demanded favours and gifts from him.

“She made frequent demands of me and asked for various favours, The demands included gifting her expensive luxury items…..travel expenses, holidays etc”, he claims in his affidavit.

This latest affidavit by Hiranandani came even as the Ethics committee has called Nishikant Dubey and Advocate Jain Anant Dehadrai to submit oral evidence on the charges of ‘Cash for Query’ made by the BJP MP.

“Exciting news! Mint is now on WhatsApp Channels 🚀 Subscribe today by clicking the link and stay updated with the latest financial insights!” Click here!

Catch all the Politics News and Updates on Live Mint.
Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates & Live Business News.


Updated: 20 Oct 2023, 08:03 AM IST