Our investigation reveals nexus between Baba Ramdev and BJP
Ramdev had donated Rs 11 lakhs to BJP in March 2009
Afroz Alam Sahil and M. Reyaz, BeyondHeadlines
New Delhi: Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev’s organisation Patanjli Ayurveda Ltd. donated money to India’s main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) before the 2009 general elections.
Ramdev is suddenly in the midst of corruption allegations after his announcement to foray into politics and to launch his political party by June. The Yoga guru has directly held the Congress party responsible for recent spat in big scams and is the force behind recently founded movement “India Against Corruption,” which includes luminaries like Sri Sri Ravishankar, Swami Agnivesh, Arvind Kejriwal, Anna Hazare and Maulana Mahmood Madani, among others. The Congress party, in turn, has hit back at the Yoga guru.
BJP has come in open support of Ramdev calling Congress party leader Digvijay Singh’s allegation “absurd.”
When BeyondHeadlines (BH) contacted Ramdev’s aide Ajay Arya, he tried to laugh away the question: “we ourselves survive on donations, whom will we donate? You might have got some misleading documents.” When confronted that BH has documents obtained through the Right to Information (RTI), he hung up the phone. He, however, called back and put “Swamiji” on line. The Swamiji was none other than Baba Ramdev himself who very politely inquired into the matter and told the BH, “I have no knowledge of any such matter. However, you can talk to Acharya Bal Krishna Mahraj, who looks after internal matters of the organisation.” He himself gave our investigative editor his contact number. All attempts of the BH to contact Acharya have so far been unsuccessful.
The documents, which are in BH possession, show that Ramdev’s Patanjali Ayurveda Ltd. donated Rs 11, 00,000 by a bank cheque of Punjab National Bank (Cheque No. 859783) dated March 8, 2009.
BH tried to contact senior BJP leaders and specifically asked “shall we see the two –donations and support – in same light?” While some BJP leaders did not reply directly to the question on phone. BJP General Secretary Ravi Shankar Prasad asked for a mail. BeyondHeadlines accordingly send the mail on his official email id [email protected] on Monday evening. At the time of filing this report, BH had got no response.
BH also spoke to BJP spokesperson Prakash Javedkar, but he declined to make any comment on this issue, saying “I don’t look into the party’s financial matter.”
While all political parties get donations, and there is nothing wrong in it, Ramdev has maintained that “I am not with BJP, never was and never will be in future.”