As the government reached out to the BJP for help in transacting business in Parliament that continued to remain stalled on Friday,the principal opposition party dug its heels in,insisting that both Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Law Minister Ashwani Kumar must resign in the wake of the CBI directors affidavit to the Supreme Court.
CBI has stated that its affidavit was filed after interference by the government and this proves that the law minister was misusing his office to save the Prime Minister in the coal scam. BJP is now fully firm on its demand for resignation of the PM. The CBI affidavit proves that the Prime Minister wanted to save himself from the CBI inquiry using the law ministry, BJP leader Rajiv Pratap Rudy said.
Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley asserted that following CBI director Ranjit Sinhas admission that the draft status report was shared with a PMO official,the buck stops with the Prime Ministers Office.
Government has really been caught with its pants down. This has gone well beyond the law minister now. The Prime Ministers Office must explain in what context was a PMO official shown the draft of the coal report. The affidavit has smashed claims of no interference by the government, Jaitley said.
The affidavit gives some information and conceals the rest. Were the PMO officials there in the law ministers meeting or were they separately shown the report? Was there any communication between PMO and CBI on this status report? Jaitley asked. He demanded that both the original and amended versions of the status report be made public.
Senior BJP leader Jaswant Singh suggested that Dr Singh should himself think of liberating India from him (his rule). After a successful political career,he should now take rest somewhere in the evening of his life.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath reached out to BJP parliamentary party chairman LK Advani,but was learnt to have come away with the message that the government could not expect cooperation on legislative issues after having indicted former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in the draft JPC report on 2G spectrum.
Confrontation and cooperation cannot go together, Jaitley said.
BJP sources said that the government could at best hope to get the Finance Bill and Railways demands for grant passed without any discussion. Given the Congresss confrontationist attitude,the remaining part of the session could be washed out, a senior BJP leader said.
Advani was learnt to excused himself from further engagement with Nath citing Leader of the Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swarajs absence from Delhi. Swaraj is in Karnataka on campaign,and the government now has time until Monday to frame a proposal that satisfies the BJP,especially on the JPC report on 2G.