New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh`s statement in Parliament on coal block allocation was criticised by opposition parties on Monday with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) accusing him of hiding facts and the Left charging him with shirking accountability.
"(The) country is upset with Prime Minister`s statement. He is making excuses and is hiding the facts," BJP leader Prakash Javadekar said.
In the entire statement, Javadekar said, the only correct point was that the prime minister takes full responsibility for the decisions of the coal ministry.
"All the files related to coal allocation had his stamp as the coal minister and that is why we want him to resign," he added.
Communist Party of India leader D Raja said the Prime Minister had not spoken about accountability in his statement.
"Several questions have to be answered by prime minister directly... There is question of accountability. The Prime Minister did not speak about it," Raja said.
He, however, opposed any move to adjourn parliament sine die due to the BJP disrupting proceedings over its demand for the Prime Minister`s resignation following the CAG report on allocation of coal blocks.
The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) asked the government to cancel all the coal blocks allocation found faulty by the official auditor and said they may be auctioned.
CPI-M leader Sitaram Yechury also refuted Manmohan Singh`s claim that states like West Bengal had wanted the coal blocks to be allotted and not auctioned. All the allocations made to private players since the Congress took power in 2004 should be cancelled, the Marxist leader told the media here.
"An auction may be done," he added.
He said none of the reasons advanced by the Prime Minister on Monday explained why no transparent and competitive bidding process was introduced in the coal sector from June 2004 till August this year.
Janata Party chief Subramanian Swamy accused the prime minister of not exercising his authority to prevent loss to the exchequer in coal block allocation.
"The time has come for a mid-term poll... we can`t have a PM who does not exercise authority," he said.