Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Apr 11:
While the Opposition parties have put Odisha Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Sanjay Das Burma in the dock over Pajero issue, Artha Tatwa (AT) Group chief Pradip Sethi today sprung a surprise of sorts when he told media persons that “the Pajero issue is the biggest joke of the year” and “the person is innocent” while being taken to a designated court here for production.
In the indirect reference to the beleaguered minister, Pradip Sethi–one of the accused in the multi-thousand crore chit fund scam in the state—gave a clean chit to the former saying, “The Pajero issue is the biggest joke of the year. The person is innocent. The allegations are false. An issue is being made out of it unnecessarily.”
At a time when Opposition parties are baying for Das Burma’s blood, Sethi’s statement is likely to do more harm than good for the ruling Biju Janata Dal’s Brahmagiri legislator.
Meanwhile, political analysts questioned Sethi’s change of heart in a span of less than a month.
On March 18, Sethi had said that some political leaders had requested him to lend his vehicle for election campaigning during the last General elections, many of which have not returned to him.
“I cannot say exactly who has taken vehicles as there were 51 directors in the company. I am unaware of who has provided vehicles to whom. In my knowledge, nothing of that sort has happened. Vehicles were given to some persons is true as mentioned in the affidavit. If vehicles were used in campaigning then I don’t think there was anything wrong in it. We have not gifted any vehicle to anybody. As the matter is sub judice, I cannot divulge further details,” Sethi had told media last month.