‘PM should show responsibility against graft’

Yoga guru Ramdev said PM Manmohan Singh should display "political and constitutional responsibility" in cracking down on corruption.

Hyderabad: Yoga guru Ramdev on Monday said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh should display "political and constitutional responsibility" in cracking down on corruption.

"Personally, there is nothing against the Prime Minister. But he has to display political and constitutional responsibility in dealing with corruption," Ramdev said referring to the coal blocks allocations.

The yoga guru, who is leading an agitation against corruption and black money, met Telugu Desam Party president N Chandrababu Naidu on Monday to drum up support for the cause.

After the meeting, Ramdev told mediapersons that his group was forced to agitate because those in power were not coming forward for discussions to tackle corruption and black money.

"I wrote a letter to Sonia Gandhiji and spoke to her secretary Madhavan more than five times. He always promises to get back after talking to her but it never happened. Same is the case with bhai Rahul," he said, adding they never closed doors on them.

He said he has so far spoken to several political leaders in the country on these issues. Referring to black money, the yoga guru said while a certain amount was stashed abroad, some was lying in India.

"A lot of black money in the country is in the form of gold. Officially they say there is 20,000 tonnes of gold but it could be about one lakh tonnes," he claimed.

"Apart from gold, black money is in land, real estate, mining, drugs and with politicians and Naxalites," he said.

The so-called white paper published by the Government of India on black money was in fact a "jhoot paper" (paper of lies), he said.

If all the black money was seized by the government, India would emerge as an economic super power in the world, he said.

Observing that there existed a "shining India" and a "burning India" now, Ramdev said the gap between the two has to be closed. It would happen only if corruption was rooted out and black money seized, he said.

Reacting to allegations that he was a "US agent", he retorted: "I have got no funds from abroad nor any economic support. I received no awards from any foreign country."

He maintained that he was not worried about the allegations against him as he had a clean slate.

"For 20 years, I have been into service and there was not a single allegation. It all started only after June 4, 2011 when I launched the movement against black money.
"The government agencies have issued 60 notices so far and it will soon reach the century mark. But they failed to prove even a single charge against me," he said.

Chandrababu Naidu, while extending `full support` to Ramdev, said he wanted him to network with all concerned including industrialists in the fight against corruption and black money.

He said he would take part in the proposed agitation in New Delhi on August 9 "if invited".


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