Kolkata: CPI(M) on Friday accused the Centre of "institutionalising corruption" of the "highest level" and said the government had come up with a "diluted and weak"
"The UPA government is presiding over an institutionalised system of corruption. Today everybody is talking about corruption which has reached the highest level. We have a Union minister in jail and others are waiting in queue to join him," CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat said here.
"You have caught one (Suresh) Kalmadi, but he only had a budget of around Rs 2,000 crores, but more than Rs 40,000 to Rs 50,000 crores have been siphoned off in the Commonwealth scam," he said, during a function to commemorate the 123rd
birth anniversary of Muzaffar Ahmed, known as the pioneer of the Communist movement in India.
Karat said price rise, land grab, illegal mining, hoarding and blackmoney issues were because of the government`s "neo-liberal policy that sustains corruption."
Alleging that the UPA government had come up with a "diluted" Lokpal Bill, he said, "After a hue and cry the government agreed to a Lokpal, but that will be a very weak Lokpal which will not have much power."
"We had wanted the prime minister to be covered by the Lokpal, but it has not happened," he said, questioning the independence of the Lokpal members.
The senior CPI(M) leader alleged the government was "refusing to stop future trading in food grains" leading to rise in prices of food items.
"It is the government`s policies that is causing price rise of essential commodities. Despite international prices moving down, the government raised petroleum products prices recently," Karat said.