PM degree row: Kejriwal-BJP trade charges

Krishnanand Tripathi
Delhi Chief Minister and AAP Convener Arvind Kejriwal with party colleague Ashish Khetan. Kejriwal today claimed that as per the survey done his party volunteers Delhi University doesn't have any record on Prime Minister's Degree.

Delhi Chief Minister and AAP Convener Arvind Kejriwal with party colleague Ashish Khetan. Kejriwal today claimed that as per the survey done his party volunteers Delhi University doesn’t have any record on Prime Minister’s Degree.

Stepping up his attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his educational qualification, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal today alleged that a degree obtained by a person with similar name has been shown as his own.

Responding to Kejriwal’s charges, BJP today said Delhi CM has lowered the dignity of his office by levelling false charges against the PM.

BJP said it was done to divert attention from AgustaWestland deal.

Kejriwal told a press conference that he can assert with “full responsibility” that Delhi University’s records have no mention of “Narendra Damodardas Modi” and that one “Narendra Kumar Mahavir Prasad Modi” had taken admission in 1975.

The Delhi Chief Minister, who have been demanding that Modi’s degrees be placed in public domain, said the issue was not whether the PM was “10th pass or 12th pass” but that he has furnished “fake” certificates and “cheated” the people of the country.

“You don’t need any degree to become PM. Talent is not necessarily a product of formal education. A person with less formal education can also be extremely talented, take for example Anna Hazare.

“Firstly he lied in front of the country, secondly he lied in his affidavit and thirdly the degree that is emerging is forged. This is a case of cheating. If there are charges of cheating against a person like PM, then it is a grave matter,” Kejriwal said.

Kerjriwal claimed that AAP volunteers have conducted “searches” across departments of DU, even in school of open learning, but did not come across Modi’s enrollment form or degree.

“I started saying with full responsibility that DU does not have his records only then. We came across one Modi who took admission in 1975 and is a resident of Alwar, His date of birth is 1958 whereas our PM’s date of birth is 1950,” the AAP chief said.

File photo of BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad. Prasad said Delhi Chief Minister has lowered the dignity of his office by leveling unfounded allegations against the Prime Minister.

File photo of BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad. Prasad said Delhi Chief Minister has lowered the dignity of his office by leveling unfounded allegations against the Prime Minister.

AAP leaders Ashutsoh and Sanjay Singh have also filed an RTI with Delhi University seeking copy of Modi’s application form, copy of enrollment form in Modi’s handwriting, copy of relevant register, copy of his marksheet of each year, copy of convocation list of 1979 and announcement list during convocation.

BJP today accused Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal of lowering his chair’s dignity by levelling “unfounded” allegations against Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his educational qualification and said it was being done to divert attention from AgustaWestland case involving Congress.

“Parties and leaders supporting Congress are levelling unfounded allegations about the Prime Minister’s educational qualification to provide relief to it. It is quite a coincidence that when a serious debate is on over the AgustaWestland case, they are doing so to deflect attention,” Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

He termed the charges as “a complete lie” and said “the post of the Prime Minister has certain dignity. Modi is a popularly elected leader. It is painful to see a chief minister frequently levelling unfounded and petty charges (against him). Arvind Kejriwal is lowering the dignity of the chief minister’s post”.

(With agency inputs).