Monday 19 November 2018

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Politics | Lok Sabha '98

UF reluctant to divulge Bofors info

 

Forget disclosing the names of those involved in the infamous Bofors pay off scandal, the United Front government is not ready to divulge even the government findings into it, until the chargesheet is filed, due to the undertaking given to the Switzerland government.

Senior BJP leader Atel Bihari Vajpayee has made the demand. The government could very well divulge the findings of the investigations conducted by the Indian government, if not the Swiss bank documents due to the undertaking, he had opined.

"The government findings are not independent. They are based on the Bofors papers of the Swiss Bank. It is one whole document", states union law minister Ramakant Khalap.

It is difficult to separate the findings of the Indian government from the Bofors papers procured from the Swiss authorities, he says, while also recalling that the government position was made clear in the Parliament itself.

"You draw your own conclusions", says he when asked whether Sonia Gandhi, who was the first one to make such a demand, was not aware of these facts.

He is also non-committal on whether the UF would disclose names of all the persons allegedly involved into the Bofors pay off scandal while Vajpayee had already promised to do so if the BJP comes to power. "You ask him how he will do it", he added.

Khalap is also not in agreement with Samata Party’s demand that a person not born in India should not be allowed to occupy high offices of the president, vice president and the prime minister of the country. The demand has specifically come forward because of Sonia’s Italian connections.

"The Constitution of India allows every citizen of the country to occupy high offices of the State", he said. But when asked about amending the constitution in changing situations, he brushed aside the issue, claiming that he has not applied his mind to it.

Regarding the prime ministerial candidate of the UF, Khalap said the decision would be taken only by the elected MPs after elections. "Some need icons, some prefer semi-gods while some want persons having ideological footings as the prime minister", he said.






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