NEW DELHI: The ruling BJP has decided to match Congress in its aggression in the parliament. As Congress is bent on raising issues of BJP state chief ministers Vasundhra Raje and Shivraj Singh Chouhan, apart from Sushma Swaraj, the BJP MPs have given notices in the Rajya Sabha for discussing corruption charges against the Congress chief ministers.
As per convention, the state subjects are not discussed in the Parliament. But as the Congress is trying to corner the government on alleged improprieties charges against Raje and Chouhan by demanding their resignation and discussion on the Vyapam and Lalit Modi issue, the BJP strategists have decided to take on opposition party.
Sources said BJP MPs have given notices for discussion on state level issues like alleged corruption charges against Himachal chief minister Virbhadra Singh, financial irregularities in Uttarakhand relief fund, charges against Kerala CM Oommen Chandy. As Trinamool Congress is also demanding action against the BJP ministers and CMs, BJP MP has sought a discussion on scams in West Bengal. “We will beat Congress at its strategy,” a senior BJP leader claimed.
The day one of the monsoon session in the Lok Sabha was adjourned after reading obituaries, the actual drama will be witnesses in the Lower House on Wednesday when Congress president Sonia Gandhi and vice president Rahul Gandhi are expected to lead opposition’s charge against the government.
Earlier on Tuesday, BJP tried to turn the tables on the Congress. After the Congress insisted on discussion on help extended by Sushma Swaraj to former IPL chief Lalit Modi in Rajy Sabha, finance minister Arun Jaitley said the government was not ready for discussion but even Swaraj was ready to make a statement. After repeated adjournments, the Congress insisted on her resignation.
Addressing a press conference, Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad attacked Congress saying it was running away from debate.
Reacting to Congress’ demand that Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh chief ministers Vasundhara Raje and Shivraj Singh Chouhan quit, Prasad added that then Robert Vadra's land deal and CBI's probe against Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh could also be discussed.
“All parties could decide by consensus to break the parliamentary tradition of not discussing state issues in Parliament. If debate on state issues is allowed, then there could also be discussions on scams in Karnataka, Kerala, Assam, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh,” Prasad added.
The government also accused the opposition of running away from discussion. Jaitley told reporters after Rajya Sabha was adjourned, "We get a distinct and clear impression that the opposition wants disturbance for some time. They don't want a discussion. The government is publicly declaring, as we have in the House, that we are ready for a discussion in any format, at any time."
Asked if the Prime Minister will speak on the issue, Prasad did not rule it out, saying Modi had spoken in both the Houses on a row over Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti but noted that it had not stopped Congress from stalling proceedings.
The telecom minister defended BJP they had demanded resignations of UPA ministers like A Raja and Pawan Bansal
when FIRs were lodged against them.