Jaitley assails Kejri, AAP

NEW DELHI: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has accused Aam Aadmi Party and Arvind Kejriwal of using advertising funds to manipulate media. He said that while ‘friendly’ media is being given advertisements, media houses which are critical of the AAP government are being denied ad revenue. In a no holds barred interview with Arnab Goswami on Frankly Speaking, Jaitley takes the most controversial questions in a direct and open manner.

The Finance Minister is unsparing on the government of United Kingdom for providing a safe haven to liquor baron Vijay Mallya, a wanted man in India. Taking a dig at the “famed British civility” he says, “Britain has one of the highest standards of civility in public life and therefore for Britain to become a heaven for any absconder out of India is something that I cannot fathom. British government has taken a position that if you enter the Britain with a valid passport, then we are not going to deport a person, you come in by way of extradition. And conventionally they have been very slow and reluctant in extraditing people. And I think where you criticize the government of India, we can take all the steps but ultimately we can not physically lift an individual and bring him back. Well I only hope that the British government had realised that absconders in one jurisdiction can’t make a heaven in another jurisdiction. This is not civility. And this is not certainly British civility.”

Arun Jaitley clearly hints that wings of the controversial CBFC chief Pahlaj Nihalani will be clipped in the next couple of weeks when the government announces a new policy in this regard.

“I am reasonably certain that once we are able to announce those new guidelines, the roles of individuals will get diluted. How to deal with those individuals, I think you should trust the government. The government will deal with them and advise restraint or take whatever appropriate actions is required in the matter.”

On the all important Uttar Pradesh assembly elections which are due on 2017, Jaitley outlines the BJP strategy. He says Ram Mandir will not be made an electoral issue and that party is not looking to polarise the state in order to win votes. Jaitley says, “We don’t want in anyway to communalise or polarise the election, but if there is even some evidence of migration taking place from Kairana, it’s an important issue that the state government there must address it”.