Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia on Wednesday sent a defamation notice to Bharatiya Janata Party’s Delhi unit chief Manoj Tiwari and two others for alleging that the Aam Aadmi Party was involved in a Rs 2,000 crore scam. Tiwari had claimed on Monday that an additional Rs 2,000 crore was spent on the construction of classrooms in Delhi when they could have been constructed at Rs 892 crore.
Sisodia also sent notices to BJP leaders Parvesh Singh and Vijender Gupta over the “false allegations”. “Delhi Deputy Chief Minister @msisodia serves a legal notice for criminal defamation against BJP leaders @ManojTiwariMP, @p_sahibsingh & @Gupta_vijender for their false allegations related to Delhi govt schools classroom construction,” the party’s official handle tweeted.
In the notice, Sisodia accused the three BJP leaders of defaming him through “offending publications” that he said were based on “cooked up” allegations. He also asked for their “unqualified apology”.
Tiwari responded to the notices, saying that he refuses to “bow down to your pressure tactics”. “We will prove your corruption ... @BJP4Delhi stands by the people Of Delhi and will recover this enormous sum of taxpayers money,” he said. “We will go to Lokayukt and The Courts.”
Pointing to irregularities in the construction costs, Tiwari cited purported details of a Finance Committee meeting of the Delhi government in March 2018, alleging that the government constructed 366 nursery classrooms at a cost of nearly Rs 28.70 lakh for each of them. “The minutes show an estimate of Rs 221.44 crore, which was revised to Rs 326.36 crore. The PWD was verbally authorised to complete the work pending formal approval,” PTI quoted him as saying.
The Delhi BJP, however, did not reveal how they got hold of the documents. The party on Tuesday had filed a police complaint in the alleged scam, asking for an investigation. Tiwari claimed that the police had forwarded the complaint to the Delhi government’s Anti-Corruption Branch.
On Monday, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Sisodia had dared the BJP to arrest them if they were involved in corruption.