The BJP immediately took the cue and demanded the Prime Minister’s resignation. “Dr Manmohan Singh, will you permit yourself to be questioned by the CBI? They talk of fighting corruption…we would like to ask Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi if they will allow CBI to question the PM,” said senior BJP leader Ravi Shanker Prasad.

“The Attorney General has accepted that something major was wrong in the coal block allocations. He has confided in the Supreme Court that there were serious irregularities in the allotments. The onus is now on the Prime Minister, as he held the coal portfolio from 2006 to 2009 when the allocations were made. We reiterate that he should own up his responsibility and resign,” BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said.

He also sought to question CBI’s “silence” on action against two ministers of state who held the coal portfolio and officials of the PMO who dealt with the coal blocks allocations.

The BJP leader also hoped the Supreme Court would give directions to probe the money trail and unearth the beneficiaries of the scam. Alleging that coal blocks worth Rs 50 lakh crore were given “virtually for free”, he said it meant that there were many partners in the scam.

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