New Delhi: After facing mounting pressure over a favouritism scandal involving Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and finance minister Taro Ase, country’s finance ministry today acknowledged that the key documents relating to the scandal had been doctored.
Abe and his finance minister both faced extreme pressure after the scandal resurfaced recently, alleging officials and authorities of altering the key evidence to parliament.
The scandal that emerged about a year ago relates to selling land to a close kin of Abe at a price almost one tenth of the original value. The opposition was of the opinion that the buyer, who was a right wing operator of private schools, got the plot at a meagre cost because of his connections with the family of the Prime Minister.
Now the scandal has resurfaced with the finance ministry admitting that the documents presented before the lawmakers were altered with few chief passages removed before presentation.
The doctoring was done to make the documents coherent with the speech of the head of the tax agency Nobuhisa Sagawa,in the parliament. Sagawa has stepped down over the scandal.
Finance Minster Aso is also under the radar but the ministry insisted on Friday that he had no plans to step down.
Abe has always been denying his involvement in any scandal and has said that he will step down if he was found to be involved in the land deal.
According to recent polls, Abe’s popularity has witnessed steep decline.