New Delhi (TIP): Congress president Sonia Gandhi on August 23 told party MPs not to be defensive on the CAG report on coal block allocation as the government had not done anything wrong, and to aggressively counter the BJP’s demand for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s resignation.

Gandhi, who met a group of Congress MPs including some first-timers, agreed with their suggestion that senior ministers of the party should convey the party’s stance on coal allocation through media interactions as the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was not allowing debate in parliament.

She agreed with the MPs’ suggestions that the BJP was trying to derive political mileage from the CAG report and the party should convey its stance aggressively, one of the MPs said. “She told us to convey the party’s viewpoint aggressively. She told us there is no need to be on the backfoot,” the MP said.

He said Gandhi agreed with MPs’ suggestion that party should field senior ministers to convey the party’s viewpoint. Another MP said Gandhi agreed that the party should expose the BJP’s ‘obstructionist’ parliamentary tactics.

‘We met her to convey our viewpoint about how parliament is functioning. We told her that BJP was doing a disservice which should be taken to people,’ a party MP said later.
The group met Gandhi soon after the Lok Sabha witnessed its first adjournment over the BJP’s demand and conveyed their anguish at repeated stalling of parliament’s proceedings over the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report on coal blocks allocations.

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