New Delhi, Sep 3 (ANI): The issue of missing files relating to Coalgate led to protests in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) demanding that Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh must make a statement on missing coal files before he leaves for the G-20 summit
"The Prime Minister will not be available as he is going for the G-20 summit (in St Petersburg)," Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj told the Lok Sabha.
"This is the last day we can get a response from the PM, we should set aside all other work for a discussion on the coal scam, " she said.
"Found out today that the Prime Minister is going on a foreign trip. Have the files disappeared or is this a cover-up?," she asked.
The BJP had on Monday also targeted the Prime Minister in Rajya Sabha on missing files pertaining to coal mines allocation, saying the scam is "monumental" and demanded that he clarify on it.
Raising the issue during Zero Hour, BJP leader Prakash Javadekar said two days back the Prime Minister said he was not the custodian of files whereas the Opposition believed "he is not only the custodian of files but also the custodian of the nation but not performing both the tasks well."
"It is a monumental scam and occurred when the Prime Minister was the Coal Minister...PM should give a statement on this," Javadekar said, demanding to know whether any FIR was lodged in the missing files issue despite the Supreme Court asking for it.
Amid attack over missing files pertaining to allocation of coal mines, Prime Minister had earlier said in Rajya Sabha, "I am not the custodian of files in the Coal Ministry."
Dissatisfied with the reply, Javadekar launched a scathing attack on the government saying it "is doing a massive cover up" and sought PM's statement on it.
He said unfortunately the Committee, formed by Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal included a Joint Secretary level officer who is charged with changing the files with the CBI.
The BJP has held Dr. Manmohan Singh responsible and demanded his resignation for what has been estimated as loss of Rs 1.86 lakh crores to the national exchequer by the CAG in coal block allocation.
The CAG report does not indict the Prime Minister or his office, but the BJP is emphasizing that the Prime Minister held direct charge of the Coal Ministry for the years under scrutiny. (ANI)