Kolkata: Slamming the Congress after the arrest of fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi, Union Minister and BJP leader Babul Supriyo on Wednesday said that some corrupt businessmen fled the country because they knew the "chowkidar" is in power and that no UPA leaders would be able to save them.
"Congress has been asking why did Vijay Mallya, Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi flee India. They fled the country because they knew 'chowkidar' is there at the Centre and they do not have UPA leaders or big heads of UPA to save them," he told reporters here.
Fourteen months after he fled India, Nirav Modi was arrested in London on Wednesday in connection with a Rs 13,500 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case and was sent to police custody till March 29 after being denied bail.
The 48-year-old businessman was arrested from Holborn on the behalf of Indian authorities and was produced before a judge at the Westminster Magistrates Court.
The Police made the arrest seven days after the Westminster Court issued an arrest warrant against Nirav Modi, who left India days before the scam came to light in January 2018.
Supriyo, the Union Minister of State for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprise, said that untrue comments were being made by some Congress and opposition leaders.
Supriyo also alleged that Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi secured their loans in the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) regime and accused former Finance Minister P. Chidambaram of facilitating the process through which loans were availed by the fugitive businessmen.
He also attacked Congress President Rahul Gandhi for targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the Rafale fighter jet deal.
"Rahul Gandhi utters lies and all the lies are being exposed. He made false allegations. He thinks that the premise of his entire political campaign can be based on repeated lies, which will turn into truth one fine morning. But that is not happening. We are all chowkidars now," Supriyo said.
Taunting the opposition alliance, he said that "corrupt leaders" were getting together for malafide intentions."