The Bharatiya Janata Party on Monday demanded yet another ministerial head charging Minister of State for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh with “lobbying for Chinese companies notwithstanding the security threat” to India.

A statement issued by party spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said: “The Prime Minister owes an explanation for the conduct of his colleague and the continuing inter-ministerial squabbles.”

The BJP was referring to uncharitable comments about Home Minister P. Chidambaram made by Mr. Ramesh while on a visit to China as well as his “lobbying” for some Chinese firms in the information technology sector.

Instead of putting forth the views of the Government of India, Mr. Ramesh was “lobbying for Chinese companies…a Union Minister criticising the government position on foreign land is not only rare but also untenable,” the party said.

Linking this episode with the recent tapes of another Minister made public by the media – the reference was to Telecommunications Minister A. Raja – the Opposition party noted “the recent startling revelations of officially tapped conversation between a lobbyist and a minister confirm the role of lobbyists within the power corridors. Utterances of Mr. Jairam Ramesh establish that lobbyists also operate from within the government.”

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