By Aires Rodrigues
The BJP which is known to speak out on anything, and everything has surprisingly maintained stoic silence on the controversy revolving around ‘Silly Souls Café and Bar’ allegedly being run by Union Minister for Women and Child Development Smriti Irani’s family in Assagao Village, Goa. This silence is deafening as the BJP owes it to the people to clarify its stand on the issue. With the illegalities blatant and galore the BJP knows well that it cannot defend but should come clean on such abuses.
The issue is not whether beef and pork is being served at that now controversial plush restaurant, but the concern is that there has been all out abuse of power and authority in the issue of that liquor license. It is not surprising that on account of high-level political patronage, the restaurant was also constructed without the required licenses and permissions while more importantly it has come up on a tenanted field which is in gross violation of law.
The evidence surrounding the running of the restaurant and bar is overwhelming with Smriti’s daughter admitting on site that she runs it and subsequent denials by Smriti that she doesn’t. One of them is clearly not telling the Truth. One wonders what an example a mother is setting for her daughter and as a Minister for the Nation. What example is the BJP government giving to a nation that a Minister can continue in office considering such glaring and blatant irregularities?
Besides, the BJP maintaining silence on the issue, it is further surprising that the Chief Minister of Goa and the concerned Ministers have also kept their lips conveniently sealed on this raging controversy.
People are not ‘Silly Souls’ and deserve the Truth to stop the growing litany of abuses and irregularities that beset Goa often through political patronage or the power of the Rupee!
While the Excise Department, Directorate of Panchayats and the Town & Country Planning department adjudicate on all these glaring illegalities, in keeping with probity in public life Smriti Irani should gracefully resign while tendering a sincere apology to the Nation.
Denying the Truth does not change the Facts!