As the Income Tax department inches closer to finishing counting the stacks of hundreds of crores of cash recovered from premises linked to the Congress Rajya Sabha MP, Dhiraj Sahu, in Odisha, the grand old party has distanced itself from Sahu, claiming that the party has nothing to do with the recovery made by the IT and it’s a personal matter of the three-time Congress MP.
Taking to the social media platform X, the General Secretary of the Congress party in communication, Jairam Ramesh, claimed that the Indian National Congress is in no way connected with the business of Dhiraj Sahu, MP. Only he can and should explain how huge amounts of cash have been reportedly unearthed by the income-tax authorities from his properties.
However, the claims made by the Congress communication in charge did not go well with the netizens, who in turn started posting pictures of the Congress lawmaker from Jharkhand with the top leadership of the Congress Party.
Calling out the remarks of Congress communication in charge, one of the popular user on X wrote that Dhiraj Sahu has been rewarded with a seat in Rajya Sabha three times while his brother was a two-time Congress MP, his entire family is an old time loyalists of the Congress party. The user further while putting up a few recent snaps of Sahu with the top brass of the Congress party wrote, that the entire timeline of Sahu is filled up with praising Rahul Gandhi and he was also paying frequent visits to party president Mallikarjun Khadge till recent.
How convenient @Jairam_Ramesh
Dheeraj Sahu rewarded 3x RS seat.
Brother was 2x MP.
Entire family is old time loyalists of Congress.
His entire timeline is filled up with praising Rahul Gandhi.
— The Hawk Eye (@thehawkeyex) December 10, 2023
Further, a few users also highlighted the old tweets of the Congress lawmaker from Jharkhand in which he targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP for alleged corruption. One of the old tweets of Sahu reads
“Desh ki Janata gareeb hoti ja rahi hai, sirf Modi mitra amir hote ja rahe hain” (People of the country are getting poorer and only Modi’s friends are getting rich).
Another old tweet of Sahu reads that the “The BJP government is busy saving those who have looted the poor, against whom the opposition has raised concern in a unifying voice. Today the parliamentarians of the opposition have taken out a foot march from the parliament to EDs office against the grand scam of Adani.”
#DheerajSahu के परिवार के एक जानकर ने दो दिन पहले ही मुझे निजी संदेश भेजा था और कहा था कि उनके पास कई सौ नहीं, भ्रष्टाचार का हजार करोड़ से ज्यादा का पैसा है। और अभी उन्हीं सूत्र से जानकारी मिली है कि गिनती 1200 करोड़ तक पहुंच गई है।
…और ये आदमी नोटबंदी से दुखी था, भ्रष्टाचार… pic.twitter.com/HllIbfE6LL
— . (@AshokShrivasta6) December 10, 2023
Who is Dhiraj Sahu?
Dheeraj Sahu, considered among the senior leaders of the Congress party from Jharkhand, Dheeraj Sahu was first elected to the upper house in 2009. He was re-elected for a second term in 2010 and was elected again in 2018. He had also contested the Lok Sabha election on a Congress ticket a couple of times from Jharkhand’s Chatra, only to get defeated on both occasions. Sahu’s extend family has been involved in Country liquor business for around four decades and has owned many alchohal manufacturing factories in Odisha.
Hailing from the Lohardaga districts of Jharkhand, Sahu has been a frequent visitor to the Congress president and other senior leaders of the Congress party. Sahu was also seen accompanying the former Congress President and parliamentarian Rahul Gandhi when the latter was taking out his much hyped Bharat Jodo Yatra in November last year.
The recovery made by the IT department
It is to be noted that the IT department raided several premises linked to the senior Congress leader in Boudh, Bolangir, Titligarh, Sundargarh, Bhuvneshwar, Rourkela and Samabalpur on Wednesday, December 06. The tax department also conducted raids at the residences of Dheeraj Sahu in Lohardaga and Ranchi.
During the raids the department seized huge stacks of money stashed in a number of Amirahs, stationed at premises of Boudh Distillery Private Limited (BDPL) in Bolangir of Odisha. It’s been further reported that a total of 176 bags containing significant amount of currencies were taken to State Bank of India (SBI) Bolangir branch. It is worth mentioning here that BDPL is a partner firm of the Lohardaga based Baldev Sahu and groups of Companies to which Sahu’s extended family members are associated with.
This is not the bank’s strong room; it’s Congress MP Dheeraj Sahu’s office, from where Rs 200 Crore cash was recovered during an Income Tax Department raid. While counting the money, two counting machines broke down, and 157 bags were used to transfer the cash into trucks. pic.twitter.com/MSRZk3Ebpc
— Gagandeep Singh (@Gagan4344) December 8, 2023
After the recovery of the cash, the IT department extended their search to various locations, including the corporate office of the BDPL in Bhuvneshwar. The IT department also raided residence of company officials, office premises of the company in Ramchitaka and Ranisati rice mills, along with freezing the accounts of the company, according to the reports.
As of now, as many as 140 bags of the 176 bags recovered have been counted by the officials, which has taken the recovered amount to more than 325 crores, making it the largest ever recovery of cash by the IT department in a single raid. According to the information shared by Bhagat Behra, regional manager of the State Bank of India, as many as 50 officials from three banks are involved in the counting, while a total of cash counting machine have been deployed.
Like a scene from Narcos, what’s going on at Congress MP Dheeraj Sahu’s properties pic.twitter.com/xnhnm5v07s
— Shiv Aroor (@ShivAroor) December 10, 2023
BJP targeted Sahu and Congress party
Meanwhile, after the recovery of the huge amount of unaccounted cash from the premises linked to the Congress leader, the BJP has come down heavily on the Congress party and its lawmaker from Jharkhand. Taking to the X, IT department incharge of BJP, Amit Malviya, called out the long and close association of the Congress with Sahu.
When Sahu lost Lok Sabha election in 2009, Congress party was quick to bring him to the parliament through Rajya Sabha, while he was in in the Rajya Sabha, Congress again gave him a Lok Sabha ticket from Chatra in 2014. So while Sahu may have never won a Loksabha or assembly election for the Congress, he has been the partys trusted face in the Rajya Sabha, read the crux of Malviya’s post.
How much the Congress party values Dhiraj Prasad Sahu shows in the fact that when he lost his maiden Lok Sabha election in May 2009 from the Chatra seat in Jharkhand, the party was quick to bring him to the Parliament through the Rajya Sabha. A month later, in June 2009, Congress… pic.twitter.com/9zW2lANO4B
— Amit Malviya (@amitmalviya) December 10, 2023
Earlier, Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi while sharing a paper cutting of the raids conducted by the IT department, also said that “those who have looted the people will have to return it, this is the guarantee of Modi.”
“The countrymen should look at these bundles of notes again and again, then they should listen to the speeches of their leaders on honesty, tweeted the PM further while adding a few smileys to the tweet on Friday, December 8.