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BJP Targets PM On 2G Spectrum Scam

New Delhi, Feb 3: Targeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, BJP today said he has remained silent for three years on the 2G spectrum scam to "save his chair" and asked who is the "godfather" of
PTI February 05, 2011 11:10 IST
New Delhi, Feb 3: Targeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, BJP today said he has remained silent for three years on the 2G spectrum scam to "save his chair" and asked who is the "godfather" of A Raja as the former Telecom Minister alone is not responsible for decisions cleared by the Union cabinet.

"Due to Prime Minister's silence for three years in a bid to save his chair, the nation had to face such a huge loss," Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley told reporters here.

He claimed that the arrest of Raja will not compensate the loss to the national exchequer. "After three years, when you arrest him (Raja), that money cannot be brought back...it is a theatre of the absurd...," he said.

BJP President Nitin Gadkari said the Prime Minister and his cabinet were directly responsible for policy decisions on the allocation of 2-G spectrum.

"The decisions by Raja and other ministers, were taken with permission from the Cabinet and the Prime Minister somewhere or the other during the process... So who is Raja's Godfather and who all were involved should be revealed to the nation which is the right of the people," Gadkari told reporters.

He alleged that the Prime Minister had not paid heed to the warnings given by officials on the matter.

Gadkari said the principal secretary in the department had written that the recommendation of the Group of Ministers to remove the pricing clause in the 2G spectrum allocation would be harmful for the nation.

"If the Prime Minister had accepted it then, this situation would perhaps not have arisen," Gadkari said.

He claimed that "under some pressure" the Prime Minister overruled the principal secretary and gave his permission.

"In this department (Telecom), in a way a license was given by the Central government to openly indulge in corruption. Government seems to have outsourced this department to DMK," Gadkari said.

Jaitley asked why the government and the Prime Minister had failed to take action when details of the alleged corruption in allocation of 2G radiowaves was in public domain for the last three years.

"What we have been saying on 2G spectrum for the last three years got the stamp of approval by the CAG in its report. The facts were in public domain for the past three years," he said.

He claimed that as the Finance Minister, P Chidambaram wrote to the Prime Minister in January, 2008 to stop allocation of 2G spectrum at 2001 rates and had suggested that the licences should be auctioned.

"What was the reason that for the past three years, nation was made to undergo loss of crores of rupees and the government and the Prime Minister failed to take action?" he asked.

The BJP leader said while the PM claims he is "clean" he is unable to "control the mess" around him.

"Political honesty is when you accept the mistakes and ensure it is not repeated. This is not the character and the thinking of Congress and its leadership," he said.

He said the DMK, a key ally of the ruling UPA, has defended Raja and refused to accept his guilt in the 2G scam.

Gadkari asked the government not to make Raja and Suresh Kalmadi "scapegoats" in the 2-G and Commonwealth Games scams to escape responsibility.

He reiterated the BJP stand that until a JPC is formed, the whole truth will not come out.

"It will be an eyewash until the whole truth is revealed and the inquiry is made till the last point," Gadkari said.

He alleged that the Congress and UPA were involved in the 2G scam and that without them a scandal of this magnitude was not possible.

He demanded that a full inquiry should be conducted to bring out the truth "in black and white" and with "all tranparency" to the people. PTI