Anna Hazare,who a couple of days ago described Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as an honest man,today sang a different tune saying he “does not have faith” in him and demanded an independent probe into coal block allocations made by him as minister in charge of coal.
His team also stepped up attack on the Prime Minister alleging that the CBI probe into coal block allocations and alleged misuse was meant to give a “clean chit” to him.
During his visit to Ratnagiri in Maharashtra,Hazare said one has to select persons having good character and send them to Parliament,then only the expected change will take place.
“I had a strong belief in Prime Minister Manmohan Singh but now I do not have faith in him,” Hazare said.
On the Central Vigilance Commission decision to refer alleged irregularities by some private companies with regard to coal block allocation to CBI,he said,”The CBI is under the government. What will the CBI investigate? A third party should investigate.”
His remarks came as his team last week clubbed the Prime Minister with 14 other Union Ministers whom they alleged were corrupt and demanded a probe by a panel of retired judges who are honest.
Hazare had earlier sought to distance himself from his team’s efforts to target Singh and described him as an honest man. He had said he would like to see documents regarding allegations against him before talking about Singh.
Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal,meanwhile,alleged that the CBI probe was meant to give a clean chit to the Prime Minister.
“The CBI is under the CBI. Here the Prime Minister is accused. How will the CBI investigate the Prime Minister? It is laughable,it is an eye-wash. We know the outcome of this probe. It will say that the Prime Minister has not done anything wrong. It will give a clean chit to Singh,” he said.
Kejriwal said why is the Prime Minister afraid of a probe if he is sure that he has not done anything wrong. “We have said that we are ready to be probed. Then why is the Prime Minister afraid. So there is nothing wrong,if people suspect that there was something wrong in this.”
Referring to Law Minister Salman Khurshid ruling out a probe as demanded by Team Anna,he alleged that “corrupt” ministers are deciding on whether to investigate corruption charges. “This is the kind of anti-corruption system that currently exists in our country. This is what we are challenging,” he said.
Alleging that the CBI is a “complete puppet” in the hands of the government,Kejriwal said disproportionate asset cases were going on against Mulayam Singh Yadav,Lalu Yadav,Mayawati and many other politicians for several years.
“However no worthwhile investigation has taken place. But Jagan Mohan Reddy,who is a political foe of the ruling UPA has been arrested in a very short period. This shows that CBI rather than acting as anti-corruption body is being used to serve the Centre’s political agenda.
“Can such CBI ever do an honest and independent investigation into Coalgate scam in which PM himself is accused? Can such a CBI do an honest investigation against the other 14 ministers?” he said,adding this is why they were demanding a probe by a Special Investigation Team.
He said they would not approach Supreme Court if their demand are not met. “This is a political issue,” he said.