Politics

Gandhi dynasty in big trouble as CBI reveals that probe to continue in Bofors case

The trouble for the Gandhi dynasty has intensified and it seems like more hidden secrets might stumble out in the upcoming months. After PM Modi attacked Rahul Gandhi saying “Your father was termed ‘Mr Clean’ by his courtiers, but his life ended as ‘Bhrastachari number 1’ (corrupt number 1)”, the Bofors scam once again gained limelight.

Now the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has stunned the Congress party by revealing that it would like to continue its probe in Bofors case, where allegedly millions of rupees of kickbacks were received by several individuals.

In a statement, the CBI stated “In view of certain revelations made by one Michael Hershman, the CBI sought the permission of the trial court to conduct further investigation in the Bofors case”.

Revealing that probe in the Bofors case will continue, the CBI added “After obtaining legal opinion, the CBI filed an application on 16 May in the court stating that for conducting further investigation under Section 173(8) of the CrPC, permission of the court is not mandatorily required and an intimation to the court in this regard will suffice”.

This has come as a huge blow to the Congress party, because the former PM Rajiv Gandhi is directly linked with the Bofors case. When Rajiv Gandhi was India’s Prime Minister, a deal was signed between Government of India and Swedish arms company Bofors to supply of 410 155mm Howitzer field guns on 24 March 1986, and the cost of the contract was $285 million.

But a year later, i.e. on 16 April 1987, a Swedish newspaper revealed that Swedish artillery manufacturer Bofors had paid massive kickbacks to obtain this  $285 million with Indian government. Later on the company, Bofors was blacklisted in India.

When the scandal was exposed, it was said that Italian businessman, Ottavio Quattrocchi, who was closed to the Gandhi family played a key role as a middleman in this defence deal. In a book titled “Unknown Facets of Rajiv Gandhi”, former CBI director Dr A P Mukherjee said that “Rajiv Gandhi wanted commission paid by defence suppliers to be used exclusively for the purpose of meeting expenses of running the Congress party”.

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