The Bhartiya Janata Party on Wednesday turned the needle of suspicion on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for the alleged cover-up of scams unless he acts against the ministers, the officers in the Prime Minister's Office and the law officers on the basis of Tuesday's damning verdict of the Supreme Court.
Senior BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi told mediapersons in New Delhi that the PM has not been vindicated as claimed by the Congress and the government, since responsibility of what happens in the PMO squarely rests on him.
"The judges have tried to be nice in not directly hitting the prime minister but it remains for him to explain whether he forgot about the letter Janata Party chief Subramanian Swamy had written to him in 2008 for prosecuting then Telecom Minister A Raja after ordering that he should be apprised about the facts or did not bother to monitor," Joshi said.
He said facts that have come out in the judgment that the PMO sent Dr Swamy's complaint to Raja himself and later to the Union law ministry instead of keeping the PM in the loop and hence the nation must know whether it was a case of negligence or complicity in perpetuating the corruption.
The verdict has many dimensions and serious inferences for the governance and accountability. The apex court has gone above the journalist Vineet Narain's case in which the sanction for prosecution of the guilty government officers was required within three months by allowing one more month if the advice of the law officers were to be sought, Joshi said.
Though the Supreme Court's directions on the sanction are itself law of the land, the BJP leader said it would be better if the law itself is amended to incorporate the provisions, specifying the sanction modalities and providing for no need of sanction where the prima facie case is made out to leave it up to the court to take the decision.
Meanwhile, on Congress president Sonia Gandhi mounting a scathing attack on the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party and the BJP as hands-in-glove while starting campaign in Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday, Joshi quipped that it is a case of the pot calling kettle black.
He said it was a public knowledge of the relationship of the Congress with Samajwadi Party and BSP. "Whenever the government were caught on the corruption issue, it has been always SP or BSP coming to its rescue. Both parties also ganged up with the Congress in the Public Accounts Committee to vote against the report on the 2G scam. What more proof you want?" Joshi asked.