PM should quit on moral ground, says Gadkari

Faizabad: BJP president Nitin Gadkari today said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has no "moral right" to continue in office after the Supreme Court decision in the 2G Spectrum allocation case and demanded his resignation.

"Congress leaders have committed a big scam in 2G spectrum allocation and the Supreme Court has taken the decision to cancel the licenses. But the question arises as to who is responsible. The Prime Minister says he does not know…Is it not the PM`s moral responsibility?" Gadkari told reporters here.

He accused the Congress and the Prime Minister of causing a loss of Rs 1.76 lakh crore to the exchequer.

"He (the PM) has no moral right to continue in office. His government has caused a loss of Rs 1.76 lakh crore to the nation. This is unfortunate. He should resign on moral grounds. The image of the Congress has been tarnished," Gadkari said.

"A Raja (former Telecom Minister) is in jail. He has given an affidavit that then Finance Minister P Chidambaram had given his full approval to the decision and only after getting his nod he (Raja) took the final decision. If Raja is in jail, why is Chidambaram out of jail? Congress President Sonia Gandhi should answer this," Gadkari said.

Hitting out at the Prime Minister, the BJP chief said he should make his stand clear on the issue.

Meanwhile, Arun Shourie, who was the Telecom Minister in the NDA government, alleged "no policy or procedure" was followed in 2G spectrum allocation. .

Shourie said the UPA government was not bound to follow the policies of the erstwhile NDA regime.

"It is quite idiotic (to say UPA followed NDA policy). In what way have they been following NDA policy and what religion prevented them from departing from this policy?" he asked.

He insisted that NDA never changed the cut-off date retrospectively or changed the priority list of the applicants, which the UPA government had allegedly done.

"The licenses cancelled by the Supreme Court were those issued by the UPA government. (Telecom Minister) Kapil Sibal had every opportunity to cancel these licenses but he did not act on this matter," Shourie said.

He alleged that Sibal had in fact defended Raja and even set up group after group to let the erring companies get away with minor fines.

Shourie said even the CBI had not been able to find anything to pin on the erstwhile NDA government on this issue.

He wondered why the government was greatly relieved that Chidambaram had not been indicted in today`s judgement as if this was a "great achievement".

The BJP leader said the letters between Raja and the Prime Minister clearly show that all decisions were taken with the concurrence of Chidambaram.

"Both of them (Raja and Chidambaram), in every step that they took, informed the Prime Minister," Shourie said. He claimed that under the principle of collective responsibility, the Prime Minister too is responsible.