M A I N   N E W S

Reveal names or face stir, Congress tells Vajpayee
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 10
The Congress today threatened to launch a nationwide agitation if Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee did not reveal by November 14 the names of six ministers who had allegedly sought “undue favours” from chiefs of some public sector undertakings under their jurisdiction.

Congress General Secretary Ambika Soni said if the Prime Minister did not disclose the names by November 14, senior Congress leaders, including CWC members, would approach the President.

She said the media expose of the action of six union ministers seeking undue favours from the chiefs of the public sector undertakings under the jurisdiction of their ministries was a matter of grave concern. “It is also a manifestation of the true character of the NDA government led by the BJP, which, had loudly claimed to be a “party with difference.”

She said the alleged act of the ministers in forcing the PSU chiefs for contribution to their party coffers was “shocking and unprecedented.” “This also reflects the contempt of the government for the established principles and norms of governance,” she said.

Party spokesman Anand Sharma said “silence of the Prime Minister in the matter was intriguing.” “That an alarmed CWC was constrained to meet the Prime Minister after having drawn the attention of the Cabinet Secretary is serious enough to warrant urgent action.”

He said the Prime Minister “owed it to people of the country to reveal the identity of the ministers involved.” The Congress, he said, wanted a probe by a parliamentary panel and removal of the ministers concerned to facilitate a fair inquiry.

He said it was another addition to the “long list of scams and scandals enveloping the NDA regime.” Mr Sharma said record of government in ensuring probity in public life was “dismal.”

“Instead of acting against the individuals accused of various acts of commission and omission, the NDA government has bent backwards to shield the guilty and persecute and harass those who had dared to expose,” he said.

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