New Delhi, June 29: Refusing to buy Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's argument that his government is not “lameduck and comatose”, BJP today said the economist PM had failed to control prices, check corruption and take the opposition along on issues like the Lokpal Bill.
“The Prime Minister tried to argue against his failures... On price rise, he said the prices are going up around the world. But to claim that inflation is increasing globally is wrong. In India, it is due to bad governance and wrong and corrupt policies of this government,” BJP President Nitin Gadkari told reporters here.
“Corruption in this government has also led to price rise,” he alleged.
The BJP maintained that though the Congress-led UPA had stated in its manifesto of the 2009 Lok Sabha elections that it would check price rise, it had failed to do so. “The Prime Minister had said from the Red Fort that prices would be controlled within 100 days. In March again he said price rise would be checked. Today he is saying he does not have a magic wand to control prices.... The economist Prime Minister has completely failed in his examination. He has betrayed the nation,” Gadkari said. He insisted that Rs 70,000 Crore worth of foodgrains were being allowed to rot every year while half the country's population has a daily income of less than Rs 20. Gadkari refuted the Prime Minister's charge that the opposition is not cooperating with the government, saying it was Singh's regime which had not taken the BJP on board on the Lokpal issue.
“Both the Leaders of the Opposition (in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha) are very important leaders. But the government did not consult them on the Lokpal Bill,” Gadkari said. Gadkari charged that government approached the opposition only when it found the going tough on the Lokpal Bill due to differences with the civil society members. The opposition, however, did not reveal its stand on the Lokpal Bill- including on whether the Prime Minister should be under the ambit of the Ombudsman- and only stated that it will speak on the issue during the all-party meeting on July 3 or when the Bill comes up in Parliament. Asked about Singh's comments at the interaction with editors that he enjoyed the confidence of the Congress President, Gadkari said a general secretary of the ruling party- “close to Sonia Gandhi”- has already stated who should become Prime Minister.
He was referring to Digvijay Singh's reported comments that Rahul Gandhi has all the qualities of a good Prime Minister.
“After getting this indication, he (PM) should himself think about this. Why should we say...,” Gadkari said. Gadkari also criticised the Prime Minister on the crackdown on Baba Ramdev's supporters at Ramlila grounds. “Four ministers of the government had gone- with the Prime Minister's permission- to the airport to give a red-carpet welcome to Baba Ramdev. A few days later, a well-behaved crowd was brutally lathi-charged. The Prime Minister should clarify if he ordered it and what ws the provocation,” Gadkari said.
The Prime Minister had stated in his interaction with the editors that the crackdown was unfortunate but there was no alternative.
Terming the police action as “undemocratic and unjust behaviour”, Gadkari said, “Is it a crime to speak against corruption and Black money? And now a Congress leader has said the treatment given to Baba Ramdev will be meted out to Anna Hazare too.” PTI