MUMBAI: Days after attacking the Narendra Modi government over its alleged ”monumental criminal misconduct” in the Rafale deal, former Union ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie have now claimed that the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) was single-handedly taking all important ministerial decisions.
Sinha and Shourie were joined by another disgruntled and apparently sidelined BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha in attacking the Narendra Modi government over a wide range of issues including the India-France Rafale fighter jet deal, corruption and alleged nexus with big bank loan defaulters.
While participating in a discussion on ‘Save Democracy- Save Constitution’ in Mumbai, Yashwant Sinha claimed that ministerial decisions were being taken by the PMO “single-handedly” in the NDA government.
Taking a swipe at Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Sinha claimed that even the person holding the no 2 position in the Narendra Modi government was not aware of the decision to pull out of the alliance with the PDP in Jammu and Kashmir.
Continuing his attack, Sinha gave another example by saying that even the then Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley was not aware that the PM was going to announce the demonetisation decision.
Sinha, who recently announced his retirement from active politics, also dubbed the Rafale fighter jet deal as “scam of Rs 35,000 crore.”
”The Rafael jet deal was much bigger than the Rs 64-crore Bofors scam,” Sinha claimed.
”The Prime Minister’s Office is controlling all ministerial decisions while ministers are sitting idle”, he alleged.
On his turn, Shourie alleged that the Constitution and democracy were in danger under the Modi government.
He claimed that at least 72 cases of mob lynching were reported so far, 54 witnesses turned hostile in Soharabuddin (fake encounter) case and the CBI was being misused.
The veteran journalist also attacked the BJP dispensation for allegedly attempting to censure the media.
Joining the two disgruntled leaders, Patna MP and actor-turned-politician Shatrughan Sinha said he won’t quit the BJP on his own.
“However, if they want to throw me out, then I will not challenge their wisdom,” Sinha said.
“People ask me why do you criticise the BJP so much despite being its member. I tell them I belong to the people of India first. I try to give honest feedback to my party and its leadership,” he said.
The actor-politician also slammed the PM for demonetisation move and said that when the country was trying to recover from its shock, PM “suddenly brought GST which was a ”double blow for the countrymen”.
“These were not party or cabinet decisions, but PM Modi’s decisions alone,” he alleged.
NCP leader Majid Memon, TMC leader Dinesh Trivedi, AAP MP Sanjay Singh and others also spoke on the occasion.
While TMC’s Trivedi said the spirit of India has vanished and even Supreme Court judges were seeking justice, AAP leader Sanjay Singh alleged that the Modi-led government was the biggest “threat” to our democracy.
Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie had on Wednesday demanded a time-bound probe into the Rafale deal contract by national auditor CAG.