Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday slammed the Bharatiya Janata Party for adopting “diversionary tactics” and advised it to wait till the next elections to test its fortunes.

Ruling out his resignation in the coal blocks allocation controversy, he asked the BJP to respect the people’s verdict and let the government function.

“If the BJP feels that the majority cannot be trusted to govern the affairs of this country and they would like to run it their way, that is a total negation of what the democratic politics is about…. Our country faces enormous problems and has done well despite all these odds, but we cannot assume that we can continue to make a mess of the processes of governance and yet the country will continue to grow, that we will continue to create jobs for the young people,” Dr. Singh told the accompanying journalists on his way back after attending the Non-Aligned Movement Summit in Tehran.

Dr. Singh said lack of domestic political cohesiveness would prevent the government from laying the foundation for 9 per cent growth.

“I would very much have liked that the Opposition would give us a chance to work in a manner that the basic problems of India such as poverty, hunger and disease can be tackled effectively. Unfortunately, from one crisis to the other, the BJP has chosen to disrupt Parliament. These are all diversionary tactics. One has 24 hours at one’s disposal. If one is preoccupied all the time with handling these diversionary tactics … it affects the ability and capacity of the government to attend to its more fundamental tasks,” he said.

Asked about the issues that were giving him sleepless nights, Dr. Singh placed the developments in Parliament on top of the list. The growing communal tension, the situation in Assam, people from the northeast fleeing some southern cities and sluggish economic growth were the other issues of concern for him.

He also mentioned the “menace of naxalism” which, if not checked, would hurt both national cohesion and economic development.

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