Reiterating its demand for the resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for the coal block allotment scam, the BJP has expressed the hope that the Supreme Court would take cognisance of the latest action of the CBI in booking the former Coal Secretary P.C. Parakh.

Talking to journalists here on Wednesday, the BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said that the BJP was demanding the Prime Minister’s resignation as Dr. Singh was holding the charge of the Coal Ministry when the Cabinet note, suggesting the auction route for allotment of coal blocks was put by Mr. Parakh in 2004. It was not accepted by the Cabinet.

He contended that the CBI in a unique turnaround in the multicrore coal scam charged the former Coal Secretary, who had first prepared the Cabinet note suggesting auction for coal block allocations.

Mr. Javadekar said that had the UPA government accepted the suggestion made in his Cabinet note way back in 2004 for adopting auction route, the coal scam would not have occurred.

In all 17 billion tonnes of coal reserves worth Rs.50 lakh crore were allocated to over 140 private companies free of cost during 2006 to 2009. “In the bizarre allotment neither the state exchequer got any benefit nor did the ultimate consumer receive any benefit by way of cheap power. The only beneficiary seems to be the ruling party. This is the monumental corruption, which the Congress-led government is desperately trying now to cover up.”

He said that the Supreme Court had in earlier hearings had taken the government to task for missing files relating to the scam and for not doing due diligence in allotment of coal blocks and for not maintaining minutes of the screening committee and recording the reasons for allotment or rejection of allotment to various applicants.

Mr. Javadekar recalled that the apex court also admonished the then Law Minister for vetting and changing the CBI’s probe status report which was to be submitted before it.

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