PM can’t evade responsibility in coal block allocation: BJP

August 31st, 2012 - 6:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh New Delhi, Aug 31 (IANS) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh cannot evade his responsibility in the coal block allocations and must quit, a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader said Friday.

“It is very unfortunate that somebody like Manmohan Singh is making such statements. During the time when allocations took place, PM was incharge of coal department,” BJP leader Balbir Punj said, reacting to the prime minister’s statement that he would stay away from the slanging match.

“If the main accused continues to hold his position, then what do you expect will happen to the country. Why does he have so much love for an office which does not have any real power to run the regime,” Punj told news channels.

The prime minister said he did not want to get into a slanging match with the BJP on its demand of resignation over coal block allotments because he wanted to preserve the dignity of his office.

The CAG had earlier this month said in its report that lack of transparency in the allocation of coal blocks to private players resulted in a loss of Rs.1.86 lakh crore to the exchequer as on March 11 last year.

While union Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahay had earlier denied allegations of nepotism and impropriety over helping his brother in getting coal blocks allocated, Punj said Sahay’s role in the scam was an “example of crony capitalism”.

The BJP has been stalling parliament since last week, demanding that the prime minister resign over coal block allotments.

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