Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma slammed Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia for making corruption allegations against him, threatening to file a criminal defamation case against the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader.
Earlier, Sisodia said that in 2020, when the country was fighting the Covid-19 outbreak, Sarma, then Assam’s health minister, granted government contracts to his wife’s and son’s business partners to supply PPE kits at above-market costs.
Sisodia told the media that while the Assam government bought PPE kits from other companies for Rs 600 each, Sarma “took advantage of the emergency” by placing urgent supply orders for Rs 990 each with the enterprises of his wife and son’s business partners.
In response, Sarma stated on Twitter: “At a time when the entire country was facing the worst pandemic in over 100 years, Assam hardly had any PPE Kits. My wife took the courage of coming forward and donating around 1500 free of cost to the govt to save lives. She didn’t take a single penny.”
The chief minister also included a letter from then-National Health Mission head Dr. Lakshmanan thanking JCB Industries, of whom Sarma’s wife Rinki Sarma Bhuyan is a partner, for giving PPE kits as a corporate social responsibility during COVID-19.
Chief minister Sarma added that Sisodia had shown a completely different side at the time. Sarma went on to say that the Delhi deputy chief minister ignored his repeated requests for assistance to Assamese citizens stranded in Delhi, and that he will never forget having to wait seven days for the body of an Assamese Covid victim from a Delhi mortuary.
”Stop sermonising. I will see you in Guwahati as you (Sisodia) will face criminal defamation,” added Sarma in another tweet.