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‘Hum Adani ke Hain Kaun’: Congress to pose 3 questions every day to PM Modi in new ‘series’

Senior party leader Jairam Ramesh has put out a statement alleging that Modi government's ‘loud silence’ on Hindenburg allegations against Adani Group ‘smacks of collusion’.

File photo of Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani at India Ideas Summit in New Delhi | ANI
File photo of Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani at India Ideas Summit in New Delhi | Photo: ANI

New Delhi: Questioning the silence of the Modi government on the allegations of fraud made by short-seller Hindenburg Research against the Adani Group, the Congress announced Sunday that it would pose three queries every day to Prime Minister Narendra Modi as part of its new “series HAHK – Hum Adani ke Hain Kaun (who are we to Adani?)”.

Senior Congress MP Jairam Ramesh wrote on Twitter: “The eloquent silence of the PM on the Adani MahaMegaScam has forced us to start a series, HAHK-Hum Adanike Hain Kaun. We will be posing 3 questions to the PM daily beginning today.”

On January 24, Hindenburg Research, a US-based investor research company, had released a report that alleged the Adani Group, headed by Gautam Adani, had “engaged in brazen stock manipulation and accounting fraud scheme over the course of decades”.

In the days following the report, the group witnessed a major stock market meltdown.

In response to the report, the Adani Group issued a 413-page statement calling the allegations a “calculated attack on India, the independence, integrity and quality of Indian institutions, and the growth story and ambition of India”.

Also read: Market has won & now it’s for Adani to decide whether he will lose or not

The first three questions

In his tweet on Sunday, Ramesh put out a statement addressed to PM Modi, alleging that his government’s “loud silence” over the allegations “smacks of collusion”.

He also put out the first set of three questions.

In the first, Ramesh attacked Gautam Adani’s brother Vinod Adani over his name emerging in the Panama Papers and the Pandora Papers for operating “offshore entities”.

“He is alleged to have engaged in ‘brazen stock manipulation’ and ‘accounting fraud’ via ‘a vast labyrinth of offshore shell entities’. You have spoken often about your sincerity and ‘niyat’ (intention) in fighting corruption and even subjected the nation to the heavy costs of demonetisation,” read the statement, asking: “What does the fact that a business entity you are well acquainted with faces serious allegations tell us about the quality and sincerity of your investigations?”

In the next question, Ramesh alleged that “you have misused” the Central Bureau of Investigation, the Enforcement Directorate and Directorate of Revenue Intelligence to “intimidate political opponents and punish business houses that do not fall in line with your cronies’ financial interests”.

“What action has been taken, if ever, to investigate the serious allegations made over the years against the Adani Group,” he asked.

The third question under HAHK was: “How is it possible that one of India’s largest business groups, one that has been allowed to build monopolies in airports and seaports, could have escaped serious scrutiny for so long?”

“Was the Adani Group essential to a dispensation that has profited from ‘anti-corruption’ rhetoric all of these years?” the statement added.

The Congress has been critical of the Adani Group on multiple occasions. Various opposition parties, including the Congress, have even demanded a discussion in Parliament on the allegations of fraud against Adani.

On Friday, the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha were adjourned for the day following protests by opposition members on the subject.

(Edited by Nida Fatima Siddiqui)

Also read: Adani is down but far from out. What he does next will be crucial, for him & his creditors