A day after businessman Robert Vadra expressed interest in “a larger role in serving the people” once he sees through the various investigations he is undergoing, posters emerged in Uttar Pradesh’s Moradabad welcoming him to contest elections from the constituency, ANI reported.
The posters, put up by the Moradabad Youth Congress, said: “Robert Vadra ji you are welcome to contest elections from Moradabad Lok Sabha constituency.”
The Bharatiya Janata Party currently holds the Moradabad seat. Vadra is the husband of Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi, who entered active politics last month.
“First, I need to absolve from baseless accusations and allegations,” Vadra told ANI when asked about the posters. “But yes, I will start working on it. There is no hurry. People need to feel that I can make a change... All in time.”
He also told NDTV that he had “no immediate plans” to contest. “I am still dealing with ED [Enforcement Directorate],” he said, adding, “I am in no hurry as I have to earn it”.
In a Facebook post on Sunday, Vadra wrote about various initiatives of social work that he claimed to have undertaken. He posted more than three dozen photographs of him being involved in such activities. After visiting the Enforcement Directorate for interrogation in different cases, Vadra claimed to “have been a person to learn from every event I go through”.
He wrote: “All these years of experience and learning cannot be just wasted and should be put to better use... once all these accusations and allegations are over, I feel I should dedicate a larger role in serving the people.”
Vadra said different governments had tried to malign him for more than a decade, using his name to “divert real issues”.
Vadra has appeared before the Enforcement Directorate in Delhi several times for questioning this month. He is alleged to have used laundered money to buy real estate in the United Kingdom. He is also being investigated in the Bikaner land scam case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. On February 15, the Enforcement Directorate had attached Vadra’s assets in connection with the scam.
In a statement later in the day, he had said: “I don’t have to be in politics to help the people of the country, but if by joining I can make a larger difference, then why not? But the people will decide”.
BJP mocks Vadra
The Bharatiya Janata Party, meanwhile, mocked the posters as well as the speculation that Vadra will join politics. “Robert Vadra, you are welcome to contest the polls from UP’s Moradabad Lok Sabha constituency,” BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi told ANI on Monday. “Yeh jo P-R [Priyanka-Rahul] siyasi circus hai, uss P-R siyasi circus mein joker ki entry baaki thi aur joker ki entry ab dikhayi pad rahi hai. [A joker’s entry was awaited in P-R’s [Priyanka-Rahul] political circus, and with your entry, this can be seen].”
On Sunday, the Bharatiya Janata Party had taken a dig at Vadra with a tweet saying: “Presenting Congress’ Prime Ministerial candidate for Lok Sabha elections. #RobertIsReady.”
But the Congress had played down the suggestion that Vadra wanted to join politics. “Will he need Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s permission to do work related to people?” spokesperson Pawan Khera had said.