Patil says he will resign if party leadership asks him to

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New Delhi, Sep 16 (UNI) Facing flak from both Opposition and allies for being soft on terror, Home Minister Shivraj Patil today said he would resign only when the Congress president Sonia Gandhi tells him to go.

Mr Patil, whose ouster is not only being demanded by Opposition BJP, UPA government's ally RJD but also by many leaders within the Congress for being ineffective as the Home Minister, admitted that he was in the government only because his party leadership wanted him there.

"I am not in much demand. I am here just because of them (leadership). I have no group either. It's only that the leadership supports me that I continue to stay here," Mr Patil said in an interview given to a private TV channel.

Denying the charge that he was soft on terror, Mr Patil said, "Suppose I don't use abusive language. I live in a clean, neat manner. If I don't get angry with the people. If I keep my cool when it is necessary to keep cool when such incidents happen, you find fault with me. And if they are doing it, do you expect me to reply to that kind of criticism against me.'' Regarding the criticism over his changing clothes thrice while appearing before the media on Saturday after the Delhi blasts, he said, "I will leave it to the people to judge. You judge yourself.

Is this the correct way of criticising a politician. You criticise his policies, you don't criticise his clothes".

Mr Patil has been under tremendous pressure after the recent serial bomb blasts in Delhi and many other cities of the country as most of these terror incidents have not yet been cracked.

He was not invited at meeting called by Congress president Sonia Gandhi to discuss internal security scenario especially in view of the Delhi blasts and attacks on the minorities in Orissa and Karnataka.

Railway Minister and RJD president Lalu Prasad held intelligence's failure responsible for these blasts and called for a Special Cabinet meeting and a high level all party meet to discuss the blasts.

Moreover, despite Mr Patil's insistence that the existing laws were sufficient to deal with terrorism, the Administrative Reforms Commission's report on 'Combating Terrorism--Protecting by Righteousness' emphasised the need for more stringent POTA like legislation to deal with terrorism.

Significantly, Gujarat government's proposal to have special law to deal with terror has been pending with the Home Ministry for long due to its reluctance to give clearance.


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