New Delhi: Ruling out cancellation of allotted coal blocks, Law Minister Salman Khurshid on Monday said the opposition was not giving the Congress-led UPA government a fair option to end the deadlock over the issue that has led to the BJP stalling parliament for more than a week.

Speakign to media, the Law Minister said the opposition's offer was akin to offering someone a respectable funeral if he hangs himself.

"What they are saying is like 'I will give you a respectable funeral if you hang yourself'," Khurshid said.

The Bharatiya Janata Party, which has been stalling proceedings in parliament demanding Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's resignation over the coal blocks allocation, has now mellowed down and said they would let parliament function if the allotments are cancelled and a fair probe is ordered.

He said, "They are saying I will take your right hand but leave your right leg. We don't want a clever option, we want a fair option."

"Do they know what cancellation of allocated coal blocks means to the investor sentiments and economy? The country is losing not only in terms of money lost due to stalling of the Parliament, but the country is losing as we are not able to pass legislations which are of far reaching consequence," he said.

Khurshid also blamed the BJP for not being willing to let anti-graft legislations be passed.

"They are stalling all major anti-graft legislations we are trying to pass. It shows clearly they are nervous that transparency may come," he said.

He also defended the allocations saying it was in national interest.

"There is no discrepancy in allocation of coal blocks. It was done in national interest," he says."

There are many ways of taking forward national interest... the communists have their own way, the capitalist have their own way... their behaviour is a display of narrow thinking, which is against the tenets of democracy," he said.

"We cannot allow them to inflict this violence of thoughts on our democracy. This is totally against the thinking on which democracy is based," he said.

The BJP has been disrupting parliament over the last two weeks demanding the resignation of the Prime Minister after the Comptroller and Auditor General's (CAG) report on coal blocks allocation had claimed a presumptive loss of Rs.1.85 lakh crore (USD 37 billion) to the exchequer.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was in charge of the Coal Ministry for most part of the UPA-I from 2004 to 2009 and hence the blame for the presumptive loss calculated by the CAG is being placed at his door by the opposition.

(Agencies)

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