Charging Congress with adopting a “contradictory stand” on black money stashed abroad by Indian nationals,BJP on Sunday derided Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s demand to bring such persons to book,calling it “a joke”.
“Congress Ministers have refused to reveal names of account holders in banks abroad,while Rahul Gandhi has remarked that black money holders should be brought to book. This statement is nothing but a joke,” BJP President Nitin Gadkari told reporters here.
Coming down on the UPA government for not revealing the names of Indians who had parked black money in banks overseas,Gadkari demanded to know why it was hesistant to do so. “What prevents you from doing it?”.
Joining the raging debate on black money,Gandhi had on Saturday demanded stringent and speedy action against corruption,saying Indian money lying outside the country should be brought back.
Gadkari dismissed as an “eyewash”,the visit of Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao to Sri Lanka tomorrow to discuss with the island government the issue of attacks on Indian fishermen allegedly by it’s navy.
“The Congress is not serious about it (attacks on Indian fishermen by Sri Lankan Navy),” Gadkari said. He said Opposition Party Leader in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj would visit Vedharanyam in Tamil Nadu,the nearest spot to the Sri Lankan Coast and also Sri Lanka in February to acquaint herself with the hardships faced by Indian fishermen.
Gadkari said BJP would not on its own seek the support of any party for the coming assembly polls in Tamil Nadu,due in May,but are open to alliances with like minded parties. “We will not go to seek the support of any party. We are ready for alliance. If they are ready,we are also ready,” he said.
Gadkari pointed out that his party initially had just two MLAs in Karnataka but was now in power there. “Similarly,we will grow (wherever we are). In Tamil Nadu we will work very hard for the coming elections,” he said.
On attacks on Indian fishermen allegedly by the Sri Lankan Navy,he alleged the Centre was not serious about tackling it. “BJP will raise the issue in and outside Parliament,” he said.
Gadkari termed as unfortunate and totally false,the appointment of P J Thomas as Chief Vigilance Commissioner. “Opposition Party leader Sushma Swaraj has already said she would file an affidavit (in the Supreme Court)”,he said.
On January 27,BJP had slammed the government for claiming in the Supreme Court that the Committee which chose Thomas as CVC last year was not aware of corruption charges against him and sought an answer from Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for the “patent lie”.
Sushma Swaraj,who was a member of the Committee headed by Singh and had opposed Thomas’ selection in writing,had said she would file an affidavit in the Apex Court to “set the record straight”.
Asked about the new Telecom policy launched by Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal,he said there was need for “transparency” in it. “What we need is a transparent policy. BJP has already prepared a policy in coal auction and there is a separate e-auction for it. We need only a transparent policy,” he said.
Sibal had said on Saturday that all operators would henceforth have to pay market price for initial as well additional spectrum.
Gadkari said the 2G spectrum scam has “damaged” the image of the country and the Centre should take a correct “transparent” action in this regard. He alleged that the Centre’s wrong policies had resulted in 18 per cent inflation.