Congress defends PM, Chidambaram after 2G order

The Congress Friday hit out at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for its "double standards" over the Supreme Court's order on the 2G spectrum case, and said the UPA government "can't be punished for following the NDA policy".

The party also said the apex court order cancelling 122 2G licences issued during former telecom minister A. Raja's tenure did not hold either Prime Minister Manmohan Singh or Home Minister P. Chidambaram responsible, as charged by the saffron party.

"The apex court's order did not hold either Prime Minister Manmohan Singh or Home Minister P. Chidambaram responsible," Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi told reporters.

"The BJP has been waiting for the past 18 months to get a line from the apex court so it can politicise the issue. It has double standards."

He said, in fact, the apex court order condemned the first-come first-served policy of issuing telecom licences issued during the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance regime in 2003.

"The UPA government can't be punished for following the NDA policy. The UPA government did not drop the policy as there was no Supreme Court order against it," he said.

Referring to the apex court's earlier order stipulating maximum four months time to sanction prosecution of a public official, Singhvi said: "The BJP opposed elimination of sanction provision in various laws in parliament but is trying to derive political mileage out of the court order."

Referring to a graft charges against former aviation minister Praful Patel in a five year old case, the Congress spokesperson said the NCP leader has himself asked the PMO to examine the issue.  "We need balance in such matters," said Singhvi.

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