PM should go, like Raja, Maran: BJP



New Delhi: BJP on Wednesday stuck to its demand for the resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the coal allocation issue and justified their demand on the grounds that former Telecom Minister A Raja and Dayanidhi Maran had to quit when they faced allegations.

"As A Raja had to go for 2G scam, and Dayanidhi Maran had to resign for his role in Aircel-Maxis deal, similarly the then Coal Minister Manmohan Singh has to go," BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said.

Rejecting Congress' appeal of a parliamentary debate on coal bloc allocation issue, he maintained it is only logical that Singh should resign as a fair investigation will not be possible without his resignation as he is the Prime Minister and hence in-charge of CBI.

Though the Congress-led UPA government is reportedly in touch with the main opposition and is trying to break the deadlock by the offer of forming a Joint Parliamentary Committee as was done in the case of 2G spectrum scam or form a Committee to look into the coal block allocations, BJP and its NDA allies are not likely to allow Parliament to function this week.

BJP cited recent experiences to insist that debates in Parliament or even in JPC on the 2G scam have so far not yielded desired results as concrete action has not been taken.

"Congress' appeal for a debate is a sham as they have never respected commitments made in parliamentary debates. In the Commonwealth Games case, the Prime Minister appointed the high-powered Shunglu Committee and promised to act upon its recommendations. But though the committee came out with six reports, no action was taken and the report was dumped," Javadekar said.

Javadekar said a similar scenario had emerged on the 2G scam issue when the government resisted the opposition demand for a JPC. BJP-led NDA had forced a washout of the almost the entire winter session of Parliament to press their demand in 2010.

"Congress handled the 2G more shabbily. First, it did not accept NDA's demand for JPC.... Then, they appointed JPC which they are now destroying. The PM himself had defended Raja to the hilt," he alleged.

BJP claimed it was only after the Supreme Court intervened that Raja was removed and the CBI inquiry yielded results after 16 months when the court started monitoring it.

"Now in JPC, they are not agreeing to the demand to call the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister as witnesses. They want to call Atal Bihari Vajpayee. This is Congress' approach and strategy," Javadekar said.

The party denied it was disrespecting Parliament by forcing adjournments and not agreeing to a debate.

"We have all the respect for Parliament. We love it, cherish it and want to protect it. But Congress has destroyed the institutions. We are only echoing the anguish of the nation," Javadekar said.

The party charged there is a "method in the madness of Congress in defending the indefensible". He said Congress always tries to first deny a scam, then delay the action against it, and finally attack the constitutional authority looking into it.

"Debate cannot be for delaying action against the guilty.... Unfortunately for Congress, there is no escape route for Congress this time as the Prime Minister was the Coal Minister during 2006-09 when the 70 billion tons of coal reserves worth Rs 51 lakh crore were alloted for free to 143 private companies," Javadekar said.

PTI