Also looked after Virbhadra orchard, says LIC agent
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BY his own admission, Anand Chauhan is an insurance agent who also owns a few hundred apple trees in Himachal Pradesh and earns in lakhs. He is also a close supporter of senior Congress leader Virbhadra Singh, among other Congress politicians, and Chauhan's claim to fame was that he handled the life insurance policies of Singh and his family. Some locals claim that he also used this to market his success as an LIC agent to gain more business.
However, on Tuesday, these links saw him being named as a key player in the corruption allegations the BJP made against Singh in the run-up to the Assembly elections in the state. BJP leader Arun Jaitley accused Chauhan of acting like a middleman as he received unaccounted money of which he said Singh was the final beneficiary.
Chauhan, however, sounded unfazed as he denied the charges and said the entire episode was a political conspiracy ahead of the elections. "I am at my native place because of a death in the family," Chauhan, who belongs to Dhartoo village near Kiari in the Jubbal-Kotkhai area of Shimla district, told The Indian Express over phone.
" Virbhadra Singh is being made a target by political opponents, especially the BJP, because of the elections. Neither he nor I have committed any irregularities in getting the insurance policy for him and his family members. I will be back in Shimla with all the papers to explain the position. All charges of bogus accounts and inflated orchard income are baseless," he said. sked about Jaitley's allegation that he had excess income running into crores earned from his apple orchards, Chauhan said: "I have only a few hundred apple trees and I earn in lakhs. Virbhadra Singh has thousands of apple trees, his income is in crores. No one should have any doubt about it."
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