New Delhi: The Congress party has defended its decision to give a Lok Sabha ticket to former Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan, who is an accused in the Adarsh Housing Society Scam. Speakign to CNN-IBN's Karan Thapar on Devil's Advocate, Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh said he's not been held guilty and is therefore free to contest.
Here is an excerpt of the interview:
Karan Thapar: CBI wanted to prosecute Ashok Chavan, the governor refused. When the CBI went to court to request their permission to remove Ashok Chavan's name from the FIR report the court refused. That's been the position since January it continues to be as of today, which means today he is a chargesheteeted man. His name appears in the first chargesheet and you have nominated a chargesheeted man despite the fact Rahul Gandhi proudly says Congress has done more than any party to tackle corruption. Here the party is letting him down.
Digvijaya Singh: Will you please allow me to answer. Mr Ashok Chavan as far as he is concerned I have also seen the papers, I also know the facts, Adarsh Housing Society has got flats which has been taken by Mr Nitin Gadkari and...
Karan Thapar: That is irrelevant.
Digvijaya Singh: One second. Let me complete. Karan let me complete. Number one. Number two he has simply accepted the recommendations made by the officer.
Karan Thapar: In which case why was he removed as chief minister in 2010. If it was fitting to remove him, how can it be correct today to make him a Lok Sabha member. You are contradicting yourself.
Digvijaya Singh: This is what I am saying. I have always held this view every man is innocent till proved guilty.