‘It is only meant to give a clean chit to PM'

Members of Team Anna on Friday rejected the idea of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) looking into the matter of coal bloc allocations to private parties when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was in charge of the Coal Ministry, saying “it is eyewash.”

“The agency is under the government. Can you really expect it to investigate the Prime Minister? We already know the outcome. It is only meant to give a clean chit to him,'' Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal said at a press conference here.

Even as the CBI initiated a preliminary probe, the BJP on Friday took credit for the Central Vigilance Commission referring the matter to the agency, saying it was on the basis of a complaint filed by their MP Hansraj Ahir. The MP, who had been pursuing the matter since 2010, sought a “special audit” of coal mining in the country.

Earlier this week, Team Anna had sought an independent probe by a panel of retired judges into charges against the Prime Minister and 14 Cabinet Ministers. A leaked CAG draft report pointed to a loss of an estimated Rs. 1,80,000 crore in the allotment of coal blocs during 2006-09 which formed the basis of Team Anna's charge against Dr. Singh.

Alleging that the CBI was a “complete puppet” in the hands of the government, Mr. Kejriwal said disproportionate assets case had been made against leaders of several political parties without any worthwhile investigations because they could be “helpful” to the government, but Jagan Mohan Reddy, who is a political foe of the ruling UPA, had been arrested in a very short period.

Asked why the Team did not approach the Supreme Court in the matter, he said courts could only adjudicate. “They cannot investigate.”

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