Reports of Bugging of FM's Office Serious Issue: BJP

New Delhi
Reports of Bugging of FM's Office Serious Issue: BJP
The reported bugging of Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee's office gave BJP a handle to allude to a "civil war" between him and Home Minister P Chidambaram, saying this seems to have led the former to ask for a probe by a private agency and not government sleuths.

"Today, the UPA government is completely directionless, rudderless, without leadership and apprehensive. The situation has come to such a pass that the Finance Minister suspects his office is bugged. The country wants to know who is bugging his office," BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said.

He indicated there seems to be a lack of trust between the Finance Minister and the Home Minister.

"Instead of getting the investigations into the matter done by the Home Ministry (under which several investigating agencies fall), the Finance Ministry had asked a private detective agency to probe," Hussain said.

He demanded details of the probe report be made public as the people want to know the facts.

"On the one hand, this government is talking to civil society (on Lokpal Bill) and on the other there is a civil war on amongst its leaders," Hussain said.

He maintained this had led union ministers to engage in a show of oneupmanship with their cabinet colleagues.

Hussain wanted to know that if the office of the Finance Minister of this country is not safe--especially at a time when the government is facing so many corruption charges.

"People want to know if this government is being blackmailed (by those bugging the office)," Hussain said.

The Lok Sabha MP maintained that with some Congress leaders openly expressing that a particular party leader should become Prime Minister, the incumbent Manmohan Singh should make his views on this issue clear to Sonia Gandhi.

BJP Vice President Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi termed the reported bugging of the Finance Minister's office a "serious" issue especially as it has occurred at a time when several high-profile cases of financial scam have come to light.

"It is a serious matter. If what has come to light is true, then it needs to be investigated. This has come at a time when there are so many cases of financial irregularities and scam," Naqvi said.

He wondered who could be behind such an act and alluded to somebody in government having an interest in bugging the Finance Minister's office.

"Pranab Mukherjee is no. 2 in the cabinet. Who is bugging its own ministers? It needs to be investigated. This raises a lot of disturbing questions," Naqvi said.

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