Barely days after Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi reiterated his zero tolerance against corrupt leaders in his party, he was seen sharing the stage with tainted Congress MP Naveen Jindal, an accused in the Rs1.84 lakh crore coal allocation scam.
The bonhomie between the two was hard to miss at a flag-hoisting event at India Gate on Mahatma Gandhi's death anniversary on Thursday.
Rahul obliged Jindal by agreeing to come as chief guest for the event. He even shook hands with the Congress MP and patted him on the back. His actions left a lot to be desired especially after he waxed eloquent about his views on corruption during a recent interview to a news channel.
Jindal faces an FIR in the coal scam for allegedly paying kickbacks to former minister of state for coal, Dasari Rao. The CBI had registered a criminal case against Jindal Steel and Power Ltd (JSPL) and its promoter as well as Naveen Jindal on June 11, 2013. It alleged that Dasari Rao received Rs2.25 crore camouflaged as investment from one of Jindal's firms within a year of allocation of a coal block to him. The CBI said JSPL and Gagan Sponge Iron Limited, also a Jindal firm, bagged Amarkonda Murgadangal coal block in Birbhum, Jharkhand in 2008 after misrepresenting facts.
The agency also named Jindal Realty Pvt Ltd, another company owned by Jindal, Dasari Rao and his media firm Saubhagya Media in the FIR. Charges of cheating and criminal conspiracy were slapped on Gagan Sponge Iron Pvt Ltd and against New Delhi Exim, which the CBI claimed are owned by Jindal. It was the 12th FIR in the coal scam.