Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Home Minister were involved in damage control amidst apparent differences at the top after embarrassing media reports that Rajnath Singh's son was ticked off by Modi for an alleged ‘misconduct’.
    
As opposition parties revelled in the discomfort of the ruling party, BJP president Amit Shah also joined the Prime Minister and Rajnath Singh in condemning the reports saying ‘propaganda’ against ministers is baseless and misleading.
    
Shortly after newspapers carried reports of Prime Minister's unhappiness over some alleged misdemeanour of Singh's son Pankaj and that he was warned about it, Home Minister Rajnath Singh sought to scotch the ‘rumours’, saying that he would quit politics if even ‘prima facie’ it is proved that any of his family member had been involved in any misconduct.
    
An emotional Singh made a brief statement to the media saying that rumours about alleged wrong doings by his family members have been floating around for the last fortnight.
    
"In the last 15-20 days, there have been continuous rumours in the air about me and my family. I thought rumours have no basis and these will end in some days. But I am seeing that these rumours are gaining momentum day-by-day. I want to assure the nation that the day allegations, even prima facie or even small, are proven against me or my family, I will quit politics and public life and sit at home," he said in a hurriedly called interaction with journalists outside his office in North Block.
    
The Home Minister said that he has talked to Modi and BJP president Amit Shah about it and both of them expressed surprise and termed the rumours as completely baseless.

                                                                        HIGHLIGHTS

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP chief Amit Shah switch to control the 'damage' created by controversy surrounding Home Minister Rajnath Singh

Home Minister Rajnath Singh had on Wednesday said that he will quit piblic life if any one from his family is foundn guilty
In the last 15-20 days, there have been continuous rumours in the air about me and my family: Rajnath
I thought rumours have no basis and these will end in some days. But I am seeing that these rumours are gaining momentum day-by-day: HM
PMO, in a statement, rubbished the reports and stated them as plain lies
Simultaneously, the PMO also issued a statement, rubbishing the reports and dubbing them as ‘plain lies, motivated and malicious attempt’ to tarnish the image of the government.

"This has reference to reports appearing in a section of the media over the past several weeks, mentioning the Prime Minister, and referring to the conduct of some Union Ministers, and alleged misconduct of the Home Minister's son," the PMO statement said.
    
"The reports are plain lies, motivated and constitute a malicious attempt at character assassination and tarnishing the image of the government," it said.
    
"Those indulging in such rumour-mongering are damaging the interest of the nation. These reports are strongly denied," the PMO said.
     
The denials came in the wake of a media report that Rajnath Singh was unhappy over rumours being spread by ‘a ministerial colleague’ and ‘party rival’ about his son being pulled up by the Prime Minister over some alleged misconduct.
    
Asked who could be floating the rumours, Singh said that was something for the investigative journalists to find out.
    
On the possibility of a political rival spreading these rumours, the Home Minister parried a direct reply, saying, "I have nothing to say on this."
    
The Home Minister denied that he has complained to the RSS about these rumours.
    
In a separate statement, Shah said the integrity of all ministers is beyond doubt as he condemned allegations against the Home Minister's son.
    
The BJP chief also accused a section of the media of targeting Ministers of its government for some time now by propagating unfounded and baseless reports and asked them to desist from indulging in such propaganda and base their reports on facts.
    
"As the national president of the party, it is my belief that the conduct of all our Ministers is of high standard and their integrity beyond doubt. All such propaganda against them is baseless and misleading," he said.
    
On reports relating to Rajnath and his son, he said, "Rajnath Singh's political life is an example of decency, dignity and honesty. Any allegations against him are baseless and inspired by the bad intent of tarnishing the image of the party. I condemn it strongly. I feel personally hurt due to this incident."

 

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