BJP urges Mamata to pull plug from UPA


Kolkata: Observing that Mamata Banerjee’s “clean image” did not gel with a “tainted Congress”, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Saturday urged the Trinamool Congress supremo to pull the plug from the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government in the wake of the controversy over coal block allocations.

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“It is hard to fathom why Mamataji, who has such a clean image, is continuing her association with the Congress which is draped in scams from head to foot. We appeal to her to immediately withdraw support from the tainted UPA,” BJP national spokesman Syed Shahnawaz Hussain said here.

He said the party will not allow parliament to function until and unless its demand for resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh over the allocation of coal blocks is met.

“Because of its stubbornness the Congress is causing huge losses to parliament. We strongly condemn it and demand that the prime minister own responsibility and resign,” he said.

He also attacked the Left parties and the Mulayam Singh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party for opposing the government only as a token gesture.

“They have no moral stand. They would never let go any opportunity to save the Congress from embarrassment. They only make token opposition gestures,” said Hussain, demanding that the allocation of the coal blocks be cancelled.

“In spite of Coal India’s demand for 138 coal blocks, it was allocated far less a number, that too blocks in which coal was underground and difficult to mine. Blocks where coal was easier to mine were given out to private companies without following any procedure. We, therefore, demand that these allocations be immediately revoked,” said Hussain.

The BJP Friday launched a nationwide agitation in which party leaders will hold meetings and rallies in 40 cities across India till Sunday with a view to take “the fight to the streets and the people”.

The CAG had last month said in its report that lack of transparency in the allocation of coal blocks to private players resulted in a loss of Rs.1.86 lakh crore to the exchequer as on March 11 last year.