New Delhi: Rejecting BJP's charge that bribes were paid to it in coal blocks allocation, Congress on Monday dared it to make public any proof it had and asked the opposition party to "look within" as its former president had been jailed for graft.

Stung by the Opposition's continued tirade against Government on coal block allocation, the ruling party also questioned the legal mandate of the CAG to prepare such reports and accused BJP of making "very crude attempts" to gain "very cheap popularity".

Hitting out at BJP leader Sushma Swaraj's remarks that Congress has got a "fat sum" from coal block allocation, Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari said it could be "BJP's culture" and pointed to the case former BJP President Bangaru Laxman, who was convicted of accepting bribe from a fictitious arms dealer to facilitate a defence deal.

"BJP seems to be remembering old traditions. 24 out of 39 coal blocks allocated between 1998 to 2004 (NDA regime) were given to private companies. Did this happen in lieu of some political donation. This 'mota maal' and 'chhota mal' (fat sum or small sum) can be in BJP's culture.

"That is not Congress culture. One of their former President was sentenced to jail term for such 'chhota maal' (small sum). One should look within first before casting aspersions on others," Tewari said, adding "we want to give BJP a challenge to make public if they have any such proof".

Replying to questions on whether the government has any plan to bring a confidence motion, Tewari said, "At this point what we want is a discussion. We have got a mandate for five years...If somebody is feeling a bit itchy after remaining out of power for last eight years, there are Constitutional instrumentalities. They are free to explore the instrumentalities."

A party leader speaking separately on the condition of anonymity said that BJP is free to bring a no-confidence motion if it is so sure of its strength of toppling the government.

Parliamentary Affairs Pawan Kumar Bansal said, "There is no such plan. Why should we bring it. If the Opposition wants to bring any no-confidence motion, it will be defeated" when asked whether the government is planning to bring any confidence motion.

At the AICC briefing, Tewari said the UPA had the numbers in 2008 and similarly it has the numbers this time also.

"BJP    had not allowed the Prime Minister to speak in the House during 2008 trust vote, levelled baseless allegations and displayed wads of cash on the floor of House in a contempt of Parliament. It had to face the music for it and bite the dust in 2009 general elections.

"In 2012 this time again, the same condemnable and shameful gesture was displayed, BJP is not allowing the Prime Minister to make his statement," Tewari said.

Swaraj had charged that "huge revenue was generated but it did not go to the government and went to the Congress party".

Tewari accused the BJP of practising "double standards" on the CAG reports saying such findings are dubbed hypothetical by the opposition party, when they concern the states governed by them.

Targeting CAG, Tewari said, "The manner in which all these reports are being compiled...this is beyond the legal mandate of the CAG.... There is nothing, which gives the CAG the legal mandate to engage in this sort of exercises in which he has been indulging".

Tewari at the same time steered clear of questions on whether he felt the CAG was working with any political motive saying that it is "not the remit of any political party" to attach motives to Constitutional bodies.

He strongly defended the government for refuting the "computations" by the CAG.

"To hold a CAG report flawed on the basis of facts is no contempt of any Constitutional body.... Any political party is well within its rights to question and dispute the findings the CAG or any other Constitutional body arrive at," he said.

Slamming Prime Minister's statement disputing CAG's findings, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley on Monday said it was an assault on constitutionalism and constitutional authority.


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