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If You Can't Sack Raja, Change His Portfolio: BJP To PM

A day after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh firmly backed his embattled Telecom Minister, the BJP on Tuesday trained its guns at the PM saying he doesn't have the “political authority” to sack A Raja and
PTI May 26, 2010 11:08 IST
PTI
A day after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh firmly backed his embattled Telecom Minister, the BJP on Tuesday trained its guns at the PM saying he doesn't have the “political authority” to sack A Raja and sought at least a change in the minister's portfolio, reports Indian Express.

While saying so, the main opposition party alluded to the coalition compulsions of Singh and the Congress given the fact he and his party have to keep ally DMK in good humour.

“We are aware of your limitations as far as political authority is concerned. You cannot dismiss A Raja. At least change his department so that a fair inquiry is done into allegations of corruption in allocation of 2G spectrum,” BJP chief spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said.  

He criticised the Prime Minister for “virtually” giving a “clean chit” to Raja who he said had committed the “biggest fraud” by claiming that the TRAI had approved the policy on 2G auctions. Taking forward his party's argument that “the Prime Minister evaded answers to crucial questions”, he said the PM was “conspicuously” silent on critical infrastructure-related issues.

He identified five areas — power sector, national highway projects, agriculture, Air India and BPL data — where he said the government was lagging behind or lacking clarity. While power generation is going down, the Planning Commission has lowered the target of constructing 20 km of highways a day set by Road Transport and Highways Minister Kamal Nath.

Same is the case with agriculture sector. Agriculture income is going down and inflation is having a serious impact on the sector. There is no clarity on the exact number of BPL families in the country as five different estimated numbers are being talked about which varies from 27.3 per cent to 77 per cent, he said.