The BJP once again stalled proceedings in both Houses of Parliament over the Quattrocchi issue. Buoyed by the impressive showings in Punjab and Uttarakhand, and obviously with an eye on the Uttar Pradesh elections, it is after the scalp of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, citing serious lapses in the manner in which the issue has been handled.
The Prime Minister, for his part, has not done himself much credit by saying his Government has done nothing wrong, that the CBI has been given full freedom to pursue the case, and that the law will be allowed to take its course. This is like saying "I am the boss of the house, and I have the permission to say so."
The UPA Government has acted irresponsibly and in a callous manner on the extradition of Ottavio Quattrocchi to India from Argentina. One cannot understand why it dragged its feet for so long on the issue. Now that Mr. Quattrocchi has been released on conditional bail, one wonders whether his extradition will be as easy. The whole episode shows that the CBI has been reduced to a puppet in the hands of the government of the day.
Barun Kumar Mahapatro,
The Government has clearly mishandled the Quattrocchi issue. All attempts to cover up his detention have brought more discredit to the Government than a straightforward arraignment of the Italian businessman would have. By their over-zealous solicitousness, Congressmen have only done a disservice to their leader.
Will it not be practical for the Opposition and all of us to accept the inevitable and close the Bofors matter? The nation has already spent more than the sum involved in the payoffs scam by way of travel of Ministers like Solanki to Switzerland, CBI teams to various countries, and the money gone waste stalling proceedings in Parliament. Mr. Quattrocchi, on the other hand, seems to be cheerful, enjoying all the attention and publicity he gets free of cost.