New Delhi: BJP today expressed disappointment over Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s speech at a CBI conference and alleged that he was trying to pressurise the agency against probing corruption cases on the ground that it should not investigate policy issues.
“The country is disappointed with the speech of the Prime Minister at the CBI conference yesterday. Instead of assuring that there will be transparency in policy and implementation, he is trying to pressurise CBI against investigating corruption under the garb of policy,” BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said here.
Referring to the 2G spectrum scam, BJP said the government had given away the limited resources in 2008 at 2001 prices. “This was a case of fraud and not of policy. The government has built in corruption in policy itself,” he said.
Javadekar maintained that in the case of Coal block allocations, the government had decided in 2006 that it will auction coal but allocated blocks arbitrarily to private parties.
“These need to be investigated and cannot be protected as policy as this is institutionalisation of corruption in the garb of policy. Moreover, the Prime Minister went ahead and justified corruption by saying when growth happens there is increase in corruption. This is unacceptable,” he said.
BJP alleged that the PM’s statement is an attempt to bully CBI in public and a “veiled signal” to the judiciary as well.
“We condemn this justification of corruption in the name of policy,” Javadekar said.
Sinha insisted that, contrary to TRAI’s belief, the telecom sector in India is showing robust growth at present.
The BJP leader said TRAI has also recommended reduction in the Spectrum Usage Charge (SUC) from the present 3 to 8 per cent to just 3 per cent in all cases. Citing an example, he claimed that some of the operator companies are generating a revenue of more than 10 per cent per year and paying only upto 6 per cent SUC.
Batting against reducing SUC to just 3 per cent, Sinha said, “Government will not only be giving away precious spectrum to these operators free of cost, without earning a singly penny for the exchequer but will also enable the incumbent operators to garner windfall gains.”
BJP charged that the new reserve price recommendations of TRAI are intended only for the gains of a few incumbent telecom operators at the cost of national exchequer and are at “total variance” with the law laid down by the Supreme Court.
“It is the duty of the government to ensure that this does not happen,” Sinha said.