Addressing the allegations that her daughter runs an "illegal bar" in Goa, Union Minister Smriti Irani on Saturday, 23 July, said:
"The fault of that 18-year-old girl who studies in the first year of college is that her mother did a press conference on the loot by Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi of Rs 5,000 crores."
She also said that her daughter was being targeted and her character was being "assassinated" by the Congress because her mother fought the Lok Sabha elections against Rahul Gandhi from Amethi in 2014 and 2019.
"Her character was publicly mutilated by the Congress party and they claim that the mutilation stemmed from a show-cause notice. I want to ask that Congressperson, where is my daughter's name in the papers that he flashed?" Irani added.
The minister also challenged Rahul Gandhi, saying that if he contested the election against her in Amethi again, he would lose.
"To the Gandhi family, which directed that this press conference be held against my child, I tell you to send Rahul Gandhi back to fight the Lok Sabha election in 2024 from Amethi, and he'll lose again. That is my promise as a BJP worker and as a mother," Irani said.
Silly Souls Cafe and Bar, the posh restaurant operated by Irani's daughter, landed in a controversy after it was found that its owners allegedly renewed the restaurant's liquor licence using the name of a deceased person.
Narayan M Gad, the excise commissioner of Goa, on 21 July, issued a show-cause notice to the restaurant after receiving a complaint from lawyer Aires Rodrigues, who stated that the owners had submitted "fraudulent and fabricated documents" to get the licence.
According to the show-cause notice, the restaurant's liquor licence was renewed last month, although the licence holder passed away on 17 May 2021.
On 22 June this year, the restaurant applied for the licence renewal in Anthony Dgama's name. However, Dgama passed away in May 2021, as per the show cause notice.
As per the Aadhaar card of Dgama, which was issued in December 2020, he was a resident of Mumbai's Vile Parle. Lawyer Rodrigues has also found Dgama's death certificate from Mumbai municipal corporation to substantiate his statements.