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'PM directly responsible, but doesn't want to quit'

August 23, 2012 22:55 IST

Senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader Yashwant Sinha lashed out at Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday for maintaining studied silence on the BJP demand to own up moral responsibility and resigning in the Coalgate scam.

"Dr Singh was coal minister during UPA I rule and hence is directly responsible for the losses, but does not want to resign from his post," Sinha told mediapersons in New Delhi.

When asked what is his response to the reports that Central Bureau of Investigation is likely to file two cases against the governments of NDA ruled Odisha, Jharkhand, Rajasthan (when Vasundraraje was the chief minister) and Chhattisgarh,, Sinha said he does not know about the authenticity of such reports.

"But if true then it is a matter or concern. It clearly indicates the intention of Dr Singh. We want JPC to question both Dr Singh in coal scam and former finance minister P Chidambaram about the 2G scam in telecom sector. They gave us the list of politicians to be questioned including former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee and George Fernandes. Everyone knows that their health is not good. We spoke to P C Chako (JPC chief) on August 6 and he promised to get back to us. We are still waiting for his reply," he said.

The former finance minister said that there is no authenticity in news reports that "we are planning to resign from Public Accounts Committee and other committees."

Recounting the 2G scam for which former telecom minister A Raja spent one year in jail, Sinha pointed out that the nation has suffered a lot due to corruption.

"The government was very reluctant to constitute a JPC to enquire into the matter in spite of the near unanimous demand in its favour by all the political parties except the ruling party," Sinha said.

Onkar Singh in New Delhi