Friday, January 30, 2015  


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Congress leaders rally behind Rahul Gandhi after attack from Jayanthi Natarajan

NEW DELHI: As former Union minister Jayanthi Natarajan targeted Rahul Gandhi, Congress rallied behind him, dismissing as "completely baseless" the allegations of his interference in the work of environment ministry and accused her of having "ulterior motives".

Jairam Ramesh, who was Natarajan's immediate predecessor in the ministry, said her allegations against Gandhi were "not just completely unfair but also preposterously baseless."

In a statement here, he said, "As Natarajan's immediate predecessor for slightly over 25 months, I can say with all honesty that at no point of time did Rahul Gandhi ever tell me, directly or indirectly, what to do or what not to do in the discharge of my ministerial responsibilities."

Rubbishing the allegations, M Veerappa Moily, who succeeded Natarajan in the ministry, said Rahul Gandhi had never interfered in the functioning of the ministry.

He said in Bengaluru that neither Rahul nor Sonia Gandhi had any clamour for power and that is why they remained out of government.

"Soniaji could have become the Prime Minister thrice... Rahul ji also could become the Prime Minister anytime," he said, adding both, however, chose to remain away from government.

Congress spokesman P C Chacko said Natarajan has made the "wild allegation" against the party Vice President with an "ulterior motive."

Seeking to puncture Natarajan's charges, he wondered why she did not raise the issue in the party fora for the past one year in spite of several opportunities.



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