Major opposition parties today said the Supreme Court ruling on the 2G scam was a “severe indictment” of the UPA-II government and demanded the Prime Minister own up responsibility but stopped short of demanding his resignation.
While the BJP sought the resignation of Home Minister P Chidambaram,the CPI(M) demanded that Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal quit as he had “refused to cancel” the 2G spectrum licences claiming there was no loss to the exchequer.
Maintaining that the Supreme Court decision on 2G scam raised serious questions on the credibility,transparency and integrity of the UPA government,BJP spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh “cannot escape” the political responsibility as he is head of the government.
“The 2G scam is the biggest scam since Independence. The entire country was deeply agitated and shocked over it. But Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union ministers Kapil Sibal and P Chidambaram defended the 2G spectrum allocation inside and outside Parliament and stated there was no wrongdoing,” he said.
Addressing a press conference in Lucknow,Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley said even after CAG pointed to the wrongdoings,government had defended then Telecom Minister A Raja.
The CPI(M) said the apex court’s order was a “strong indictment” of the government and asked the Prime Minister to take a call on its fallout as it has exposed the “bluff” on the UPA-II’s claims.
Demanding Sibal’s resignation,senior CPI(M) leader Nilotpal Basu said,”The Prime Minister,who is known as a paragon of virtue,will have to take a call on the fallout of the judgement which has called the bluff on the government’s claims on the 2G scam.”
The party said that in the light of the judgement,”the Prime Minister is duty bound to break his silence and answer to the country” and demanded immediate implementation of the order by the government.
Another party leader Brinda Karat said it was a “strong indictment” of the government and of those “who had argued that illegal and unconstitutional steps taken by the government be defended in the name of increasing investments by corporates and multinationals in India”.
CPI General Secretary A B Bardhan said it was P Chidambaram’s job as the then Finance Minister “to prevent irregularities. He has no right to look away. There is criminal culpability.”
CPI(ML) Liberation demanded the resignation of the UPA Government,saying the Prime Minister,Chidambaram and Sibal were “collectively responsible,not only for the massive scam,but for covering up corruption and attempting to protect the corrupt.”