The tax raid on Samajwadi Party leader and perfume maker Pushpraj Jain in Uttar Pradesh’s Kannauj today has fuelled the war of words between the ruling BJP and Akhilesh Yadav’s party, centred on “perfume” barbs.
The two parties have been targeting each other since the raids against Piyush Jain, another perfume businessman, in Kannauj and Kanpur that threw up eye-popping visuals of heaps of currency notes running into nearly 200 crore.
Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav had then alleged that the actual target was Pushpraj Jain, but the central agency made a mistake and raided the wrong perfume businessman.
The Income Tax department today raided 50 locations across Uttar Pradesh, Delhi and Mumbai that are linked to Pushpraj Jain, Samajwadi Party’s member in the state legislative council and a businessman who owns a perfumery, petrol pumps and cold storage operations.
Following the raids, Mr Yadav hit out at the ruling BJP and said Kannauj will see a “perfume revolution” in the upcoming election and Uttar Pradesh will see change.
“The BJP spreads the smell of hate, how will they like the fragrance of inclusiveness? They want to malign Samajwadi Party’s name, but what is sad is they are defaming Kannauj in the process,” he said.
Alleging that Piyush Jain has links with the BJP, he said,
“The BJP should answer how so much money was found from a trader despite its decisions like GST and demonetisation. They had gone looking for Pushpraj Jain who launched the Samajwadi perfume, but found Piyush Jain. To cover up their mistake, they have raided Pushpraj Jain now,” he said.
“I want to tell the people of Kannauj and the country that whenever the BJP feels they are losing, they do this. This BJP government is full of propaganda, but the people will teach them a lesson. “Is baar Kannauj se itra (perfume) ka inqalaab hoga, 2022 mein badlaav hoga (This time, there will be “perfume revolution” in Kannauj, 2022 will see change),” he told the media.
Soon after, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who is on a Uttar Pradesh visit in the run-up to the election, launched a “perfume” barb at Samajwadi Party, which is being considered the main challenger to the incumbent BJP.
“The stench of Samajwadi perfume has spread through the country. Now when this perfume friend’s black money is being raided, they are feeling uneasy,” Mr Shah said.
Sources in the central agency that probes GST evasions had earlier trashed the mistaken identity theory and said the raids against Piyush Jain followed a detailed probe based on specific intelligence inputs.