'Swamy targetting Congress to garner cheap publicity', says Narayanasamy

Chennai, Nov. 5 (ANI): Minister of State in Prime Minister's Office (PMO) V. Narayanasamy on Monday hit out at Janata Party chief Subramanian Swamy for moving the Election Commission of India seeking derecognition of the Congress Party, and said that the latter was making allegations to garner cheap publicity.

Narayanasamy said the allegation levelled by Swamy against the Congress is unfounded and totally false.

"In fact, as a political party, our Congress Party is not collecting from any government organisation, private donations are made it is accounted. The income tax is being paid by our party, wherever eligibility is there the amount is being paid except the exemption. The allegation, which he made about the National Herald, the Associated Journals -- the point has been made very clear by the General Secretary of the party Janardhan Dwivedi, saying that the National Herald was stared by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and it was closed because they were not able to run it," said Narayanasamy.

"More than 700 employees were rendered jobless, therefore the amount has to be settled to them. The Congress Party gave the loan for the purpose of settling the employees' dues. It is on humanitarian consideration. Therefore, there is no violation of rule, but Subramanian Swamy for cheap publicity is making this allegation against the Congress Party," he added.

Narayanasamy further said Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi's office has made it very clear that they would move the court for defamation against Swamy.

Swamy had earlier on Saturday urged the Election Commission to de-recognize the ruling Congress Party for providing an interest-free loan to publisher, the Associated Journals Ltd.

"This loan is in violation of the guidelines and rules that has to be mandatorily followed by political parties for registration as well as recognition. Section 29A to C of the RPA (1951) and Section 13A of IT Act (1961) do not make any provision for a political party to extend loans to companies, with or without interest," said Swamy in his petition to the poll panel.

"The Congress party has prima facie committed an offence under the electoral law as well as the Income-Tax law for which it is necessary for you to hold hearings. The Election Commission therefore must decide under Paragraph 16A of the said Symbol Order to de-recognize the All India Congress Party," the petition added.

Swamy moved the Election Commission a day after the Congress admitted that it had given the loan.

Congress General Secretary Janardhan Dwivedi had also on Saturday hit back at Swamy, and said reviving the National Herald, founded by Jawaharlal Nehru, was an emotional issue for it and no commercial profit accrued to the party from the loan.

"The Congress has done its duty in supporting The Associated Journals Ltd to help initiate a process to bring the newspaper back to health," he said.

Swamy had alleged that the Gandhis (Sonia Gandhi and Rahul) floated a private company Young Indians to acquire a public limited company Associated Journal, which published National Herald, for Rs. 50 lakhs. The company they acquired, he said had property worth Rs. 1600 crore in Delhi.

Swamy also alleged that the Congress gave an unsecured loan of Rs. 90 crore to the Associated Journals. (ANI)

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