The Bharatiya Janata Party has taken exception to the decision of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to move P. Chidambaram to the Finance Ministry and give Sushil Kumar Shinde the Home portfolio and said this was yet another indication that the United Progressive Alliance government was out of touch with reality.
The party contended that handing over the Finance portfolio to Mr. Chidambaram, who has been accused of a role in the controversial Aircel-Maxis deal, is mala fide.
“On the day the power grid failure took place, putting 23 States and 64 crore people in darkness, Power Minister Shinde was given an instant reward by Dr. Singh when he made him the Home Minister. Such a reward for inefficiency is unparalleled,” BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said.
He said that instead of Mr. Shinde resigning or being asked to step down, he has been given “instant promotion.”
On shifting of Mr. Chidambaram to Finance, Mr. Javadekar said: “It was a mala fide takeover. How did the Foreign Investment Promotion Board give permission? Is this reshuffle a bid at a cover-up exercise?”
On Corporate Affairs Minister M. Veerappa Moily being given “additional charge” of the Power Ministry, Mr. Javadekar said it showed callousness on the part of Dr. Singh in dealing with the power crisis.
He said the unprecedented grid failure is a result of ‘negligence, incompetence and complete abdication of duty’ on the part of the Central government. There is no merit in the charge of the Centre that the failure was on account of overdrawing by States, he said.
Mr. Javadekar said his party would raise this issue in the coming monsoon session of Parliament.