Natarajan being used by BJP ahead of Delhi polls: OPCC

Bhubaneswar: Alleging that Jayanthi Natarajan was being “used” by BJP ahead of assembly elections in Delhi, Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) today alleged it was part of a conspiracy by the saffron party.

“Natarajan’s statement months after being dropped from the ministry is part of a conspiracy hatched by BJP. The (Nerendra) Modi team used Natarajan after realising that Kiran Bedi could not ensure victory of the party in Delhi elections,” OPCC President Prasad Harichandan told reporters here.

Seekking clarification from Natarajan why she took so long to voice her displeasure against Rahul Gandhi, Harichandan said, “It is pure politics and she (Natarajan) has been used by BJP leaders.”

Claiming that Gandhi had all along been fighting for the interest of tribals and protection of environment, the OPCC President accused the Modi government of working for the corporate interests.

Harichandan also alleged Natarajan had taken certain important files to her residence in Chennai from the MoEF.

“She also met corporate leaders at her residence,” Harichandan alleged.

AICC Secretary and former Kalahandi MP Bhakta Charan Das claimed that Congress President Sonia Gandhi asked Natarajan to ensure implementation of the provisions of the Forest Rights Acts as a minister of MoEF and Rahul Gandhi’s fight for rights of tribals and protection of environment was not wrong.

“In all parties, it so happens that the leaders apprise the ministers on the feedback being received from the ground level. There is nothing wrong in a leader asking a minister to implement law of the land,” Das said adding that Rahul Gandhi had been fighting for tribals to be hit by mining at Niyamgiri Hills since 2008 at the time Natarajan was not at the MoEF.

“Allowing mining at Niyamgiri was illegal as it violated the provisions of FRA and Panchayat Raj Extension to Scheduled Areas Act (PESA),” Das contended.