Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Thursday defended Prime Minister Manmohan Singh,saying his statement in the Rajya Sabha that he was not aware of the chargesheet against P J Thomas is absolutely correct.
I am responsible for selecting the three names who were to be considered for appointment as Chief Vigilance Commissioner. I knew him when Thomas was Secretary,Parliamentary Affairs. We were looking for sober people as the CVCs job is very important. I take full responsibility. I have nothing to say after the Prime Minister has spoken in Parliament. All I can say is what he said was absolutely correct, Chavan,who was here to meet Congress chief Sonia Gandhi,told The Indian Express.
The former Minister of State in the Prime Ministers Office had come under fire from the Opposition after the Prime Minister stated in the Rajya Sabha last Tuesday that he was not aware of the chargesheet against Thomas as the notes,which had been prepared under the guidance of the then Minister of State,DoPT,did not contain this information.
Subsequently,Chavan had said that the vigilance clearance is given by the state,which was construed as his dig against the Kerala government. Kerala Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan reacted,saying that the state government had informed the Centre about the alleged corruption case against Thomas.
Chavan on Thursday sought to put the lid on the entire controversy saying that he would not comment anything on this issue as the Prime Minister has clarified everything. He,however,added that his remarks were misinterpreted and he had not sought to criticize or blame anybody.
Later in the evening,Chavan met Sonia Gandhi to hold consultation with her about his election to the state Legislative Council. MLC Sanjay Dutt,who is set to resign from the Legislative Council to vacate his seat for the Chief Minister,was also present at the meeting.