PM has no authority to continue: Third Front

Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader Sitaram Yechury, while addressing a joint press conference with leaders from CPI, TDP, Samjwadi Party and JD-S, said: "The committee constituted (to probe the cash-for-votes scam) by parliament during UPA-I has tabled its report in parliament and has recommended investigation. Without doing so, the government has no moral right to remain in power."

"It was a case of criminal culpability and the government should come out clean by getting it (WikiLeaks revelations) investigated by an appropriate agency," he said. Speaking on the same lines, Communist Party of India leader Gurudas Dasgupta said the revelations exemplified a case of "gross moral degeneration".

"It is a case of gross moral degeneration; the PM should come into the house and deny the charges and sue the paper that has published the expose," Dasgupta told reporters.  
The other parties, speaking in similar vein, demanded the government come clean on the issue.  CPI-M general secretary Prakash Karat said it was an act of bribery and the government should come clean on it.

"This is an act of bribery," Karat told a TV channel.  "How come all MPs from various parties decide on a political issue to vote against their party with or without interest. How come 19 MPs cross-voted? Some of them actually accepted and told the leadership in their party they had taken money," he said.

Karat said the issue will have its effect on the West Bengal and Kerala elections and the Congress would be identified as a "corrupt party".

"People of Bengal and Kerala will identify the Congress with corruption," he said.  US diplomatic cables leaked on WikiLeaks and published by The Hindu newspaper say that payoffs had been made to MPs to ensure majority for the Congress-led government in the confidence vote over the India-US nuclear deal.

Nachiketa Kapur, a political aide of Congress leader Satish Sharma, is quoted as saying that a fund of Rs.50 crore had been formed to pay MPs. He also apparently showed two chests containing cash meant for the payoffs.

National Democratic Alliance (NDA) leader L.K. Advani asked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to quit "forthwith" and said he had lost the right to govern after the leaked US diplomatic cables.

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