Cong tries to score by selective acceptance of CAG report

The Congress may find fault with the reports of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) to contain the political ramifications to the UPA-II, but it relies on the same auditor for highlighting the “shortcomings” of Narendra Modi’s government in Gujarat.

The AICC has been highlighting findings of the CAG reports on the functioning of the Gujarat government in areas covering education, women and childcare and national security.

The party has fielded Gujarat Congress leader Shaktisinh Gohil to puncture Modi’s “tall claims” on good governance in his home state which has become the talking point of the election campaign.

Interestingly, Gohil has been taking the help of the reports of the same CAG, which a number of Congress leaders loved to criticise in the immediate aftermath of its findings on the alleged irregularities in 2G spectrum allocation.

Several senior ministers had criticised the then CAG Vinod Rai and had accused him of having links with the BJP.

“We take CAG reports seriously, while the Gujarat government ignores its findings. The Government of India has replied to it (CAG report),” was Gohil’s refrain on questions of selective acceptance of CAG reports.

“Every institution which is a constitutional authority is important. But, humans work at these institutions. Whenever a wrong man sits in a right place then the wrong has to be pointed out,” he said.

One of the Congress’s recurring attack is that Gujarat was a developed state before Modi became its chief minister.

Quoting CAG reports, the Congress has sought to puncture the claims made by Modi over tackling malnourishment in the state.

“In Gujarat, every third child is suffering from malnutrition, every second teenage girl is underweight,” he said citing the CAG report released last year.

On the issue of national security, Gohil said Gujarat government has received funds from the Centre but has not spent it to beef up security measures.

In 2010, the CAG had come out with a scathing report pegging the loss to the national exchequer in 2G scam between Rs 57,00 crore and 1.76 lakh crore. The figures – presumptive loss – as claimed by the government auditor created a controversy.

The findings came under intense criticism from the Congress and the government with Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal contending zero loss to the exchequer.
The government netted in excess of Rs 60, 000 crore in the 2G spectrum auctions earlier this year.

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