The Congress on Tuesday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of giving "wrong information" in his earlier election about a plot in Gandhinagar allotted to him and urged the Election Commission to take action against him, but the BJP refuted the allegations and counter-accused the opposition parties of spreading "falsehood".
At a press conference, Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera claimed Modi had declared in the affidavit that he was the sole owner of Plot 411, in Sector 1, a prime property in Gandhinagar, but later omitted that and gave details of another piece of land.
"In the light of discrepancies in the affidavit, the Congress party demands that the Election Commission of India takes thorough cognisance of the seemingly deliberate omissions in Modi's affidavit and take appropriate action under the Representation of People Act," he said alleging that Modi has given "wrong information".
Through its official Twitter handle, the BJP said, "The caravan of falsehood moves on. There is a bankruptcy of issues in the Congress Party. Today's election issue was that the number of the plot owned by the PM (his only asset) is now shown differently numbered from what was shown earlier."
"Similar charge is made against the Finance Minister. There is a limit to trivialisation. Four plots purchased by four different persons were amalgamated into one on 25.4.2008. Obviously, the number of the amalgamated plot is different from the separate individual numbers," the BJP said,
The Congress charges followed a plea filed in the Supreme Court on Monday seeking setting up of a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the alleged non-disclosure in his election affidavits by Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the details of a plot allotted to him in Gandhinagar.
The petition filed by Maharashtra-based Saket Gokhale has alleged that in October 2002, when Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat, he was allotted land in Gandhinagar as per the state government policy.
Khera alleged that in 2012, when Gujarat went to polls, Modi omitted the mention of Plot 411 from his affidavit and instead listed a plot '401/A', and declared himself a quarter owner.
His next affidavit filed for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections also did not mention 'Plot 411' and rather lists 'Plot 401/A', matching his 2012 affidavit.
In his declaration on the PMO website also in 2015, the prime minister has declared one-fourth ownership of '401/A'.
Khera said the area of the plot has remained the same from 2007 to 2015, but the ownership has changed from being full owner of 'Plot 411' to one-fourth ownership of 'Plot 401/A'.
He claimed there is no plot listed as '401/A' in the Gujarat revenue department's land records for Gandhinagar, but the same plot is also listed in Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's 2014 affidavit. "Jaitley listed himself as a 1/4th owner of the same plot as PM Modi's Plot 401/A," he said.
Khera also said publicly available land records state that Jaitley is the present and sole owner of Plot 401, but this record is discordant with previous filings Jaitley made to the Election Commission.
"Intriguingly enough, in 2012, while the Supreme Court was hearing an appeal regarding land allotments to government servants in Gujarat, and BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi, who was then the counsel for the state, submitted to the apex court that the Gujarat government had not made any fresh land allotments to MPs/MLAs or public servants since the year 2000.
"Then how did Narendra Modi acquired this piece of land Gandhinagar," Khera asked.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)