Raja''s arrest does not affect credibility of PM, govt: Cong

Written by: Pti
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New Delhi, Feb 2 (PTI) Congress today dismissedsuggestions that the arrest of former Telecom Minister A Rajain the 2G spectrum allocation scam would affect thecredibility of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

"Apart from you, there is no one in the world who willsay that the credibility of the Prime Minister or thegovernment is affected. It has allowed the law to take its owncourse, independently and objectively," party spokesmanAbhishek Singhvi told a mediaperson who posed a query in thisregard.

He was responding to a volley of questions at the AICCbriefing including whether the action of the CBI hadaffected the credibility of the Prime Minister and raisesquestions about his accountability as also the issue ofcollective responsibility of the Cabinet.

His refrain was that the arrest of Raja reflected the"credibility of the government...whether innocent or guilty....has allowed law to take its own course unlike othergovernments".

He dubbed as "absurd" suggestions that the entiregovernment needed to be blamed for the scam on the principleof collective responsibility. "Collective responsibility inthe Constitutional sense has nothing to do with criminalliability".

He also brushed aside AIADMK supremo J Jayalalithaa''sdemand that the entire family of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister andDMK supremo M Karunanidhi be arrested following the actionagainst Raja. "You cannot start criminal proceedings againstanyone just because someone has made a demand".

Replying to another question, he said the developmentwould not have any bearing on the Cong-DMK alliance inpoll-bound Tamil Nadu. "It is absolutely no reflection on thealliance. It is continuation of a legal process".

"These are all different aspects. Do not mix up. Nominister has talked about the issue of criminal liability", hesaid when asked about Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal''srecent statement that there has been no revenue loss to thegovernment on the 2G issue, a remark which was seen by theopposition as supportive of Raja.

A senior Congress leader, who declined to be identified,sought to project the arrest of Raja as also the FIR againstformer Maharashtra Chief Minister in the Adarsh Housing scamas steps that would raise the credibility of the party. "Whichother party or government has taken such action against itsown minister and Chief Minister?", he asked.

His contention was that the arrest of Raja and the actionin the Adarsh case would help end the deadlock in Parliament.

Speaking separately, AICC General Secretary JanardanDwivedi dismissed as a "silly judgement" a question whetherthe arrest of a former Minister in the UPA government showedthat the dispensation was corrupt.

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