27 February, 2021

The Ghosts Pay A Call

Should the President have to answer for his actions as a minister? Worth asking.

Jitender Gupta
The Ghosts Pay A Call

Did President Pranab Mukherjee, in his previous post of Union finance minister, act on the information provided by France on 700 high net worth individuals (HNIS) having secret bank accounts in Geneva? Did he try to bring that money back home? Did the wrong-doers face penal action? The latest disclosures by anti-corruption campaigners Arvind Kejriwal and Prashant Bhushan, accusing HSBC Bank of facilitating money-laundering, has drawn attention again to Pranab’s actions as finance minister—and with it, his name is being linked to corruption charges harking back to his nearly six decades in politics. It might be said in his defence that, when you have been so long in politics, it is difficult to emerge without facing any charges. But when Kejriwal and others began a fast against corruption at Jantar Mantar on July 29, as many as 14 Union cabinet ministers were named for involvement in questionable decisions. Pranab’s name—as finance minister—topped that list.

But just an hour into fasting, as word got out that...

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