Describing Oil Minister Veerappa Moily’s Russia-related statement as very painful, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Yashwant Sinha on Saturday said the statement has single handedly spoilt Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s upcoming visit to Moscow.
“He said India is not Russia. We have had strong relations with Russia ever since India’s independence. The most-friendly country for us in the world is Russia. And, the Prime Minister is going to visit the country next week. Just before his visit to Russia, for a cabinet minister to make such a statement that we are not Russia, is very painful,” he said.
“Single handedly, Moily has spoilt the Prime Minister’s Russian visit. The Government of India should reject this statement and dismiss Moily from the cabinet for making a statement of this kind,” he added.
Referring to the FIR against Kumar Mangalam Birla by the CBI, Moily said investigating agencies and the judiciary must ensure that India does not become like Russia.
“Because, ultimately India cannot become just like Russia, where investors are not prepared to go and billionaires are put behind the bars. That should not happen here. The job of ensuring that India does not become like Russia rests not just with the government but also with the judiciary and the CBI,” he had said.
“After all, we are not in the regime of Aurangzeb. We are in the regime of rule of law. When rule of law is concerned it applies to government, it applies to Supreme Court, it applies to everybody,” he added.
The CBI had earlier on October 15 filed FIRs against Kumar Mangalam Birla and former Union Coal Secretary Prakash Chandra Parakh for alleged irregularities and criminal conspiracy in allocation of two coal blocks in Orissa in 2005.
They said that all accused have been booked for criminal conspiracy.
The case relates to the allotment of the Talabira-II coalfield in Odisha to Hindalco Industries in 2005. (ANI)