Sushma Swaraj says 'Silent PM has no answers to tough questions'
New Delhi, Aug 27 (ANI): Asserting that Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh's statement on coal blocks allocation has vindicated the opposition's stand, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Sushma Swaraj on Monday said the former is silent and deviating from the main issue because he has no answers to tough questions.
Taking a jibe at Dr. Singh's Urdu couplet "Hazaaron Jawabon Se Acchi Hai Meri Khamoshi, Na Jaane Kitne Sawaalon Ki Aabru Rakhe", Swaraj said: "The questions were so pointed that you (Dr. Singh) would have been embarrassed in answering them. That is why you chose to remain silent."
The BJP leader further said the Prime Minister's stand over the CAG report on coal blocks allocation is not at all satisfactory.
"The statement cannot make anyone content. We would have given credit to the Prime Minister about competitive bidding for coal blocks if he had been able to implement it at least by 2012," she added.
Swaraj further said that between 2006 and 2010 the government had allocated over 142 coal blocks, which was double that which was allocated between 1993 -2003.
"If progress and GDP growth was the reason for allocating coal blocks then where is it?" Swaraj said.
"Revenue has come, but it has gone to Congress treasury," she claimed.
Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, who is facing sharp criticism from the opposition over the CAG report on coal block allocations made an earnest appeal to the BJP to debate the issue in Parliament and not disrupt proceedings.
Dr. Singh said CAG's observations on coal block allocation issue were disputable and asked the opposition to debate the matter in Parliament to allow the country to judge where the truth lay.
"And, I am sorry that the house is not allowed to function, and the BJP is determined to disrupt the normal functioning of Parliament. I wish to assure the country that we have a very strong and credible case, the observations of the CAG are disputable, and they will be challenged when the matter comes before Parliamentary Accounts Committee. So, once again I appeal to the opposition to come back to the house to debate all these issues and let the country judge where the truth lies," he added.
Dr Singh, who is under attack over the allocation during 2005-2009 when he held the coal portfolio, has been waiting to make a statement since last week but could not do so because of disruption caused by opposition, mainly by the BJP.
The BJP has held the Prime Minister, who then held direct charge of the coal ministry, responsible for what has been estimated as a notional loss of Rs 1.86 lakh crores by the CAG in coal block allocations, and demanded his resignation.
The CAG report on coal block allocations states that nearly 150 coalfields were allotted to private and state-run firms without transparency and objectivity between 2005 and 2009. (ANI)
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