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PM's straight talk on 2G: 'I have nothing to hide'

Last updated on: December 20, 2010 14:23 IST

PM's straight talk on 2G: 'I have nothing to hide'

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Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, speaking on the second day of the Congress plenary meet on Monday in New Delhi, said the PM's post should be above suspicion and that he is ready to appear before the Public Accounts Committee in the 2G spectrum scam even though there was no precedent to do so.

Dr Singh said the plenary was being held in the midst of several scams and fingers being pointed at the United Progressive Alliance II government.

"My government is committed to wiping out corruption," he said.

Pointing to the 2G spectrum scam, Dr Singh said he was ready to write to the PAC and tell them that he would be ready to appear before it if need be.

Text: Vicky Nanjappa in New Delhi

Video: Rajesh Karkera/Rediff.com

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'There is no need for a JPC'

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The PM assured that his government will take seriously the five-point agenda laid down by Congress chief Sonia Gandhi to eradicate corruption.

Explaining that there was no need for a Joint Parliamentary Committee, he rubbished the allegations by opposition Bharatiya Janata Party that the UPA was avoiding a JPC probe as 'a cover-up measure.'

He said the moment the Comptroller and Auditor General submitted the report on the 2G scam, the minister (former telecom minister A Raja) concerned stepped down.

"The report has now been sent to the PAC. All aspects of the 2G scam are being probed and the PAC has all the powers of a JPC. The Central Bureau of Investigation is also looking into the issue under the supervision of the Supreme Court," Dr Singh noted.

 


Image: PM greets spectators on Day 2 of the Congress plenary meet in New Delhi on Monday
Photographs: Uttam Ghosh/Rediff.com
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'We wanted a debate, but opposition didn't allow Parliament to function'

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"The government is obligated to act on the PAC report and let the country be rest assured that we will act," he added.

"I have nothing to hide from the public and no person, be it minister or officer, will be spared if found guilty. If there are shortcomings we will act and I seek your support for the same," Dr Singh said.

Dr Singh also took a dig at the opposition saying, "We wanted to discuss these issues in Parliament and were open to a debate, but the same opposition which cannot remove its own corrupt CMs did not allow Parliament to function.

On the other hand the Congress has removed leaders who have allegations of corruption against them when charges were not proven."

 

 


Image: PM Dr Singh with other leaders at the plenary meet on Monday
Photographs: Uttam Ghosh/Rediff.com
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'We need to work with states to tackle Naxal menace'

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Dr Singh also said that despite tensions with Pakistan, India wishes them well.

"We are committed to having better relations with Pakistan, but that could happen only if Pakistan doesn't allow its borders for terrorism against India," he said.

The PM said that the South Asian countries should not fight against each other but work together to eradicate poverty, unemployment and other issues.

"After the 26/11 terror attacks, we have taken a lot of steps to enhance security measures. Our security apparatus has improved and our intelligence gathering and sharing has also been bettered. However, the blasts at Varanasi and Pune have shown us that terrorism is a long drawn battle and we need to be vigilant at all times,' he noted.

On the Naxal issue, the PM said, "We need to rise above politics and work with state governments."

"Let the country be assured that my government is giving all support to the state governments to combat this problem. We need to look deep into this issue and I am confident that the problem will be solved," he said.

"Our relations with the international community are growing. India is a very important country and in the days to come the importance of our country will only grow even further. We share a great relation with Russia and this alliance will continue. Our relations with the United States are also deepening and this is a very important relationship," he said.

On China the PM said that the relations are good, but there are certain unresolved issues, and 'I am hopeful of sorting these issues.'


Image: PM with Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad (centre) and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee (right) at the plenary meet on Monday
Photographs: Uttam Ghosh/Rediff.com
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