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Rediff.com  » News » Cong core group meets on Coalgate, Parliament impasse

Cong core group meets on Coalgate, Parliament impasse

Last updated on: September 01, 2012 00:16 IST

Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh had a rare smile on his face when he categorically ruled out his resignation. He had just returned from Teheran when he outright rejected the Bharatiya Janata Party's demand for his resignation.

After his return, a Congress core committee meeting was held which discussed the impasse in Parliament and how the investigation into the coal block allocation scam is to proceed.

Sources say that the role of Union Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahay was discussed since letters have surfaced where he has written to the prime minister asking for a coal block for a company where his brother is the director.

Sources say that while the party would not ask him to resign at this time when it could worsen the case, rather than help in resolving the issue. Since the BJP is still adamant on the PM's resignation, he may be dropped in the impending reshuffle which is likely to take place after the Monsoon Session ends on August 7th.

A number of changes are being contemplated including changes in chief ministers and ministers and ministers with a tarnished image may be removed from the government.

The PM has once again asked Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi to seriously consider joining the government this time.

Apart from the core committee, a meeting of the strategy committee was held at 10 Janpath on Friday evening which was attended by senior leaders Ahmed Patel, Finance Minister P Chidambaram, Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Bansal and others to discuss various options before the party and the government.

Samajwadi Party supreme Mulayam Singh Yadav's suggestion for a judicial enquiry which was rejected by the party on Thursday again came up for discussion but this is also not likely to satisfy the BJP which is looking for some licences to be cancelled.

With the CBI already on the job, sources say that unless the investigation is complete, there can be no question of any cancellations since wrong intent would have to be proved.

But the government's problems are not likely to end with the Monsoon Session, since it is likely that the BJP may approach the Supreme Court as happened in the case of 2G to put the government.

Congress leaders such as Digvijaya Singh have begun to attack the Comptroller and Auditor General Vinod Rai calling him a tool of the BJP, and former CAG T N Chaturvedi saying that Rai is likely to be a beneficiary of the BJP in the days ahead.

A large section of the Congress feels that such attacks are counterproductive since the Congress also has in its stables a host of constitutional functionaries, such as former Chief Election Commissioner M S Gill Gill, whom they rewarded by bringing into Parliament and then making them ministers.

Renu Mittal in New Delhi