Mumbai: Former prime minister Manmohan Singh on Friday cautioned the Narendra Modi government against using investigative agencies to pursue "political vendettas". The Enforcement Directorate has got more powers than ever under the Modi government, and these powers should be used judiciously, he said.
Singh's comments came at a time when his former cabinet colleague P Chidambaram is in jail after being arrested in the INX Media case. In Maharashtra, NCP leader Praful Patel has been called for questioning by the ED with regard to a property deal. The agency has also named NCP chief Sharad Pawar in the Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank scam.
"I sincerely hope that political vendettas will not be used to settle scores with politicians of different hues," Singh, whose own government had once faced allegations of using central agencies such as CBI for political gains, said.
"The ED has now got more powers than it had ever before, our hope is these powers will be used not to settle political scores," he said, addressing a press conference here ahead of Maharashtra assembly polls.
He was replying to a question about the ED summoning Patel, another former ministerial colleague of his. Singh expressed confidence that the government will ensure that Patel gets justice, underlining that he should be presumed innocent till proven guilty.