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‘BJP to stick to demand for PM’s ouster on coal issue’

‘BJP to stick to demand for PM’s ouster on coal issue’
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Sunday said it will stick to its demand for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s resignation over coal scam and alleged that somebody in PMO was certainly guiding the course of events that finally led to law minister Ashwani Kumar’s ouster. The opposition party saw a massive cover-up exercise that led to Kumar’s resignation and adverse comments from the Supreme Court, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley said.

‘Somebody in the Prime Minister’s Office was certainly guiding the course of events which have taken place,’ said Jaitley in a television interview.  ‘It would be safe to presume that Indian civil servants are trained to be conventional and conservative. They are not adventurist. They don’t do these kinds of things all by themselves unless they have a brief to do a particular act. Therefore, it would be safe to presume...that they obviously acted under some guidance or instruction,’ said Jaitley
Asked if his party would stick to the demand for the PM’s resignation, the BJP leader said, ‘We will continue to flag this issue seriously. Today you have a massive cover-up exercise because of which the law minister had to resign. Because of the cover-up exercise, you had the Supreme Court giving serious comments and strictures’, said Jaitley.

On reports that a top PMO official was briefed about the law minister’s meeting with CBI on the coal issue, he said, ‘It obviously appears the Coal Ministry and Prime Minister’s Office were seriously concerned with what was the content of the status report. And, therefore the status report must be tailored to their convenience and now you have evidence available as to what four changes which were made in them.’

He said, ‘the Prime Minister or the PMO, either of them, was certainly concerned and very seriously concerned that the status report must not carry anything embarrassing and, therefore, these extra initiatives were taken, where officers were vetting an investigation  report to make sure the report does not contain anything which could be held inculpatory against the decision-makers.'

Jaitley asked, 'Was the Prime Minister's Office so seriously concerned that some officers in the Coal Ministry are going to be indicted as a result of this?'. He said it can't be conceived that investigation calls the suspects to have the report vetted by them. The BJP leader said CBI in the coal block allocation probe has to question all decision-makers and whoever was the eventual decision-maker in the coal block allocation must go.


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