New Delhi: Alleging political designs behind BJP raking up the Bofors issue, Congress today accused the opposition party of levelling "baseless and irresponsible" allegations as Lok Sabha elections are approaching.

"Whenever Lok Sabha elections are near, such issues are raised. Unfortunately a trend of levelling irresponsible allegations has begun in the country. Oppostion especially BJP and its outfits are responsible for it, party General Secretary Janardan Dwivedi told reporters here.

"They are in a haste to come to power. They had great difficulty in living without power for years when UPA-1 came and now they are finding it increasingly difficult with the advent of UPA-II. They should develop the habit of accepting the decisions of people and the courts," he said.

Attacking senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley, who raised the issue in the Rajya Sabha on Thursday, Dwivedi said that the BJP leader was the Law Minister in the NDA government when the Delhi High Court had in its judgement in February 2004 stated that not even an ounce of evidence of graft was found in the case.

"Jaitley was the Law Minister then. The NDA government was in power. Why did it not appeal against the judgement? L K Advani was the Home Minister for six years. Why did he did not expedite the probe and punish the guilty," Dwivedi said.

Attacking Jaitley, who was also the Additional Solicitor General during the V P Singh government, Dwivedi said, "You are also a prosecutor, a former Law Minister and now also want to give judgements on court verdicts. When you give judgement, you should also include the period when you ruled the country."

The senior Congress leader also recalled that late Prime Minister V P Singh also used to say that he knew about the Swiss Bank account number in which the kickback money was deposited but never disclosed it.

Dwivedi found it unfortunate that a statement by a retired policeman of another country is being given such significance that answers are being sought on it in Parliament.

"When you level an allegation against somebody or praise him there should be some justification," he said, arguing that so far there was no evidence to prove anything against the late Prime Minister in the matter.

"Did the opinion of somebody sitting in another country become so important that the entire country gets involved in it. I feel ashamed of taking even his name," he said, wondering how long the Opposition will be "misleading" the people and the media on it.
Dwivedi made an unscheduled appearance at the party press briefing  while spokesperson Renuka Chowdhary left the floor for him.

Earlier in the Rajya Sabhha, the Opposition had not allowed party leader Mani Shankar Aiyar to speak on the issue and there was a view that Congress point of view could not be put across in the din.

Party leaders feel that the Opposition will stick to the issue and, hence, there is a need to aggressively counter it.

(Agencies)