Controversies drive UPA-2 to the edge

Controversies drive UPA-2 to the edge

On top of the row over phone tapping and troubles over IPL, two Congress leaders recently crossed swords on the Naxal issue.

AICCI General Secretary and former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Digvijay Singh launched a surprise attack on Union Home Minister P Chidambaram for his “arrogance” in dealing with the Naxal issue. Not to remain quiet, Chidambaram gave his riposte to Singh in his reply on Naxal debate in the Lok Sabha on April 15 by indirectly hinting that underdevelopment of Chattisgarh goes back to the days when it was “part of Madhya Pradesh.”

In a way, Chidambaram is now been backed by Chattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh who has described the Digvijay Singh’s reign as chief minister in Madhya Pradesh as singularly responsible for the lack of development in the tribal area of the state.

But now Chidambaram seem to have provoked another Congress leader and Union Law Minister Veerappa Moily who is learnt to be upset for not being kept in the loop by the home minister while sending Solicitor General Gopal Subramanium to the US to seek access to LeT terror suspect David Coleman Headley.

The Law Ministry has cited the procedure which demands that it has to be consulted before sending a law official abroad, according to sources. Moily could not be contacted on the issue despite repeated attempts by Deccan Herald.

As if Minister of State for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor’s controversial exit was not enough, the telephone tapping case has caused further embarrassment to the UPA dispensation which is working overtime to get the finance bill passed in Parliament.

More road-blocks

Pranab Mukherjee, a trouble-shooter for the government, may find more road-blocks on the passage of the bill with  opposition parties certain to disrupt the parliament proceedings on the telephone tapping controversy on Monday.  The Opposition has already put the government on the back foot  by demanding a Joint-Parliamentary Committee probe into the IPL mess. 

Mukherjee is also left with the task of salvaging the government’s reputation from the  alleged financial misdemeanour of Sharad Pawar and Praful Patel and cleaning up the IPL mess. Even as these controversies were raging, Mukherjee, last week,  had to provide a lengthy explanation to the opposition for the continues absence of Chemicals and Fertilizer Minister M K Alagiri in the Lok Sabha .

“Our information is that he (Alagiri) does not attend even the meetings of the Union Cabinet,” said Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj with the finance minister looking in the direction of another DMK Minister Dayanidhi Maran.

Not surprisingly, Mukherjee fumed at a scribe who asked him if Chidambaram was trusted with the task of investigating the IPL controversy.

“You have all the information, so why have you come here? Get out,” shouted the number two man in the UPA.

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