The Congress on Tuesday reiterated that the United Progressive Alliance government has taken firm steps to bring back black money stashed abroad in the last three years, and criticized leaders of the National Democratic Alliance for lending support to yoga guru Baba Ramdev's agitation.
Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari, who was reacting to Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav's allegations that the UPA did not take firm step on black money issue, said it was completely inappropriate to hold the government responsible.
Tewari said that the UPA Government had presented in detail the steps being taken by it to bring back black money when the Bharatiya Janata Party moved the adjournment motion during Winter Session of Parliament.
"We have a lot of respect for Mulayam Singhji. If you remember, when the BJP presented adjournment motion during Winter Session of Parliament on black money issue, the government presented in detail all steps being taken in the last three years to bring back black money stashed in foreign banks," said Tewari.
"Dual Avoidance Agreement Treaties have been signed with various nations, Tax Information Agreement has been signed. Tax worth crores of rupees has been recovered on the basis of information provided by the various nations," he added.
Tewari also took a jibe at the NDA leaders for joining Ramdev's platform at the Ramlila maidan on Monday, saying one should not make his base strong with others help.
"So, to say that the government did not take any step in this regard is what I feel completely inappropriate. But it is very essential to say that those people, who joined Ramdev's movement on Monday and in particular the parties linked to the NDA should understand one thing very clearly that they should not make their political base strong with the help of others," said Tewari.
"As far as UPA is concerned, they have taken firm steps to bring back black money whether inside the country or outside. No other government before has taken firm steps to bring back black money in comparison to the work and commitment shown by our government on this issue in the last three years," he added.
Mulayam, whose SP is an ally of the UPA, raised the pitch against the Congress over the issue of black money on Monday, and said that his party will support anybody fighting for this cause.
"Our party is against black money. Whoever talks about bringing back black money, we will support (him)," said Yadav.
"Black money should be come back. It is our own issue. Whoever raises the issue it is good and we support him," he added, while reacting to Ramdev's declaration that he would take his ongoing protest on black money and corruption to Parliament and oust the Congress in the next Lok Sabha polls.
Several political leaders came out in support of the yoga guru earlier on Monday afternoon. Bharatiya Janata Party President Nitin Gadkari and Janata Dal-United chief Sharad Yadav and Janata Party President Subramanian Swamy joined Ramdev on his stage at the Ramlila Maidan in New Delhi.
Moreover, noted criminal lawyer and Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament Ram Jethmalani joined Ramdev at the Ambedkar Stadium earlier on Tuesday, and called the yoga guru his partner in bringing back black money.