Activists of India Against Corruption will stage a sit-in at Jantar Mantar on Sunday over the findings in the CAG report on coal block allotment, after which they will proceed to gherao the residences of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Bharatiya Janata Party president Nitin Gadkari.
Charging the Congress at the Centre, and the BJP, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the Biju Janata Dal in the States for the coal block allotment scam, the activist group has demanded the constitution of an independent Special Investigation Team of Supreme Court judges to investigate the matter.
‘States to blame too’
The IAC members — who are in the process of forming a party to provide a “political alternative” — say that while it is known that the Centre allocated coal blocks in an arbitrary manner to private players, including manufacturers of vests, cassettes and gutka, the role of various State governments in the allotment process too was “highly questionable.” The States, ruled by the three parties, had advised the Centre against auctioning, they said.
“Seek open debate”
Criticising the BJP for stalling Parliament, IAC member Arvind Kejriwal said the party was demanding the Prime Minister’s resignation though it knew it would never happen. “If the Opposition was really worried about the scam, it would have asked for an open debate in Parliament. The resignation of the Prime Minister is in no way going to unearth the depth of the coal-gate scam, but an independent investigation would.”
Mr. Kejriwal will be joined by Prashant Bhushan, Kiran Bedi and other IAC members at the Jantar Mantar protest.
Authorities will reportedly curtail Metro services around Jantar Mantar and the Prime Minister’s residence on Sunday as a precautionary measure.