NEW DELHI: The main Opposition BJP said on Tuesday that the case of ousted Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi was like the ‘good student being praised by the head master and then made to rusticate’.
Initiating the debate on the Rail Budget in the Rajya Sabha, BJP member Balbir Punj said the Railways as the “life line of the country’s economy, should not suffer due to the compulsions of coalition politics”.
“Is it not correct that the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister had given their blessings to the Rail Budget presented by Trivedi? Should these two not be questioned?” Punj asked.
He also said that both Manmohan Singh and Pranab Mukherjee had hailed Trivedi’s budget, but he was later forced to resign. “It’s like being lauded by the headmaster of the school, and then being rusticated,” asserted Punj. Trivedi, who presented the Rail Budget last week, was forced to resign after West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Chief Mamata Banerjee objected to the hike in passenger fares proposed in the Rail Budget. Following this, Trivedi was replaced by another Trinamool member Mukul Roy on Tuesday.
Punj said the speculations on Trivedi’s survival were rife even before he presented the Rail Budget and the government had made a “mockery” of the whole process.
Commenting on the relations between Roy and Manmohan Singh, he recalled that Roy was once asked by the PM to visit a rail accident site but the former refused to do so and asked the latter to visit the place himself. “How will the Prime Minister work with such a colleague?” Punj wondered.