Govt rules out resignation of Smriti, Sushma

Govt rules out resignation of Smriti, Sushma

Trouble mounts for BJP: Cong threatens to disrupt Parliament session

Govt rules out resignation of Smriti, Sushma

The government on Wednesday ruled out the resignation of Union ministers Sushma Swaraj and Smriti Irani who are embroiled in controversies, even as Congress threatened to disrupt the monsoon session of Parliament if they are not removed from the Cabinet.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and IT Minister Ravishankar Prasad defended their cabinet colleagues during a press conference saying, “This is not UPA government” and “our ministers do not do all that their (UPA) ministers used to do”.

The latest to hit the government was a Delhi court order admitting a petition against Irani in a fake degree case, within weeks after Swaraj and Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje faced criticism for helping former IPL chairman Lalit Modi, who is facing investigations in India.

“This is not their (Congress) government. This is NDA government. Our ministers do not have to resign,” Singh said when asked about Congress threat to disrupt Parliament session. As Singh dismissed the Congress demand, Prasad chipped in, “Let me add, our ministers do not do all that their ministers used to do.”

Both Singh and Prasad initially refused to answer questions on issues other than Cabinet decisions. “I have nothing to say. You are not asking about Cabinet decisions but about Cabinet ministers,” Singh said when asked for his comments on court action against Irani. The senior ministers’ remarks came a day after BJP MP and former Home Secretary R K Singh added to the dissent inside BJP over Swaraj and Raje extending help to Lalit Modi, saying, “any help to a fugitive is legally and morally wrong”.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in San Fransisco that the government will “play by the rule book” on the Lalitgate controversy. In his remarks during an interview to PTI, Jaitley said that they would make sure that absolute standards of probity are maintained. Jaitley also said there is “no question at all” about the government going on the back foot on this issue, as it has done “nothing wrong”. On Opposition strategy to disrupt the Parliament session, Jaitley said Parliament is meant to discuss and not to disrupt business. 

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