Two Congress leaders, Rajiv Gowda and Rohan Gupta, were sent notices by the Delhi Police to join the investigation into the “Congress toolkit” controversy, NDTV reported on Tuesday.
The notices were sent in connection with Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Sambit Patra’s tweets on May 18, which alleged the Congress had created a “toolkit” or campaign material to tarnish the reputation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the central government in connection with the management of the coronavirus crisis. Several BJP leaders, including the party’s National President JP Nadda, had amplified Patra’s tweet.
Gowda and Gupta had filed a police complaint against Patra. They had accused the BJP leader of sharing a fake document, claiming it was the said “toolkit”. In the notices, the police asked the two politicians to record their statements in the case, according to NDTV.
“We have told the Delhi Police that our complaint is being investigated by Chhattisgarh and we will pursue the matter there,” Rajiv Gowda said on Tuesday.
The Delhi Police comes under the jurisdiction of the Union Ministry of Home Affairs.
The Congress filed first information reports against Patra in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan, where the party is in power. It had also informed the police that the “toolkit” was fake. Fact-checking website AltNews also found that the document was created on a fake Congress letterhead.
Twitter, too, had labelled Patra’s tweet and multiple BJP leaders’ tweets as “manipulated media”. Following this, the social media company’s Delhi offices were raided on Monday evening. On May 22, the police had sent a notice to Twitter, asking it to clarify its labelling of Patra’s tweet.
Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel said that on one hand, the Delhi Police immediately reached the Twitter office for the investigation, but it “neither investigates this nor lets us investigate”, reported ANI. “Everybody believes it’s a conspiracy and it should be exposed,” he said. “But some people are trying to cover it up, which is very unfortunate.”
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi tweeted: “Truth remains unafraid”.
The party had also asked the Delhi Police commissioner to file a complaint against Patra, Nadda and other BJP leaders on the charges of disseminating forged documents with the intent of creating “communal disharmony and civil unrest”.
On Sunday, the police in Raipur registered a First Information Report against Patra and former Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh for allegedly forging the letterhead of Congress’ Research Department and printing “false and fabricated” content.