Congress Vice President and Member of Parliament Rahul Gandhi reportedly opened up on the British citizenship issue, Monday, and said: "we will deal with it." His comment comes after a show-cause notice was sent to him regarding his citizenship by the Parliamentary Ethics Committee, which is headed by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-lawmaker LK Advani.
He was asked if he declared himself as a British citizen in two tax returns of his U.K.-based company, reports said.
The issue regarding Gandhi's citizenship was raised by BJP member Subramanian Swamy in November 2015. He said he possessed two tax returns documents of Gandhi's U.K.-based company Backops Limited from 2005 and 2006, in which Gandhi declared himself a British citizen. BJP MP Mahesh Girri then took up the issue with Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, who then referred it to the ethics panel in January 2016.
The Congress party has reportedly released other documents of the same company, in which the Congress MP has declared himself as an Indian citizen. They have said that the differing claims of citizenship can be chalked up to a "typing error" by the British authorities. The Congress have dismissed the probe as formality, as there is "nothing incriminating" against him, NDTV reported.
In the notice, Gandhi has been asked to respond to the "complaint of ethical misconduct given by Subramanian Swamy and forwarded by Mahesh Girri."
The letter was sent to Gandhi late last week, the Economic Times reported.
The Congress party has accused the speaker of bypassing "the process of natural justice" by referring the issue to the ethics panel without giving Gandhi a chance to respond.
Gandhi also challenged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to jail him if the charges against him are proven.
India does not recognise dual citizenship, which the U.K. does. To be a part of Parliament, the candidate needs to be an Indian citizen, failing which would be a violation of the Representation of the People Act.
In a similar case, the Supreme Court had dismissed a Public Interest Litigation, filed by Advocate Mahesh Sharma, seeking a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into Gandhi's citizenship in November 2015.