After the CBI registered an FIR against former coal secretary P C Parakh in the alleged coal blocks allocation scam, the BJP said Wednesday officers may be made “scapegoats” to shield “misdeeds” of Congress members and demanded the resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during whose tenure as the coal minister the allocations were made.
“In the CWG scam, there would have been 10 signatories to major decisions, but one final signatory was held responsible. In the coal scam, you (the CBI) are not holding the final signatory responsible but officers who can be made scapegoats,” party spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said.
“We are sure the Supreme Court will take note of all these developments. The BJP reiterates its demand for immediate resignation by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, because the buck stops there,” he said.
The BJP urged all officers who were involved in decision-making in the controversial coal blocks allocation to come out and speak the truth.
“Former coal secretary Parakh has told partial truth. If he is a conspirator, the Prime Minister (who was coal minister then) should also be a conspirator. He should reveal all now,” Javadekar said, adding, “An attempt is being made by the government to scare officers. But they should speak out. Parakh should speak the whole truth.”
Senior BJP leader and former finance minister Yashwant Sinha said: “He (Parakh) should make public statements on how files were disposed at that time, how chits were received from the Congress headquarters in PMO and how PMO relayed the instructions to the coal ministry for allotment of coal blocks.”
Javadekar lamented Parakh, who had suggested the auction route to avoid loss to the exchequer, had been booked by the CBI. “Had the UPA government accepted the suggestion made in his (Parakh’s) cabinet note in 2004 for adopting the auction route, the coal scam would not have occurred,” he said.
The BJP, however, steered clear of commenting on industrialist KM Birla’s name appearing in the FIR. “This is the 14th FIR in this case and at no point we (the BJP) have discussed a particular FIR”, it said. The “BJP wants the whole scam unearthed and the money trial established”, the party said.
CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury demanded a thorough inquiry. “All this is part of a thorough inquiry the government had promised. We had asked for a statement by the Prime Minister in Parliament, which he reluctantly gave. The investigation is being