New Delhi: The arrest of Union Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal’s nephew Vijay Singla for accepting bribes in connection with the promotion of a senior railway official has brought another minister in dock. (JPN/Bureau)
Law Minister Ashwani Kumar is already under fire with allegations of vetting the CBI’s status report on coal block allocation scam. The growing list of tainted ministers in UPA II has earned it the dubious distinction of being a government of scams.
Here is the list of those ministers who greatly dented the image of the UPA government in its second innings:-
Salman Khurshid: There are allegations of forgery and misappropriation of funds against the Zakir Hussain trust run by Union minister Salman Khurshid and his wife Louis Khurshid. The funds were meant for the welfare of differently abled people. Khurshid had out rightly denied the allegations after the surfacing of the documents in media raising questions on spending of funds in this matter. Later, the then Law Minister Khurshid was shifted to the Ministry of External Affairs, one of the top four ministries in the Union Cabinet.
Virbhadra Singh: Congress leader Virbhadra Singh along with his wife faces allegations of receiving bribes of Rs 3 lakh from Ambuja Cements and Rs 2 lakh from Mohan Meakin brewery for helping them set up a cement plant and an effluent treatment plant in Himachal Pradesh. A case was registered against Virbhadra (the then steel minister) and his wife by the state police in 2009. Later he resigned from the Union Cabinet after a court in Shimla framed corruption charges against him in a over two-decade-old case.
Dayanidhi Maran: The allegation against the then textile minister Dayanidhi Maran is that he favoured a Malaysian company Maxis while granting telecom licences when he was telecom minister in UPA I. The company allegedly invested Rs 600 crore (Rs 6 billion) for a 20 percent stake in Sun Direct, owned by his brother Kalanidhi Maran. Maran resigned from the cabinet in July 2011.
A Raja: According to a CAG report on 2008 2G spectrum allotment, the then telecom minister A Raja denied to follow set norms to benefit private firms which caused a whopping loss of Rs 1.76 lakh crores to the exchequer. According to the report, the allocation was done on the basis of first come first get instead of bidding process. Out of 122 licenses, 85 were given to companies who were not fulfilling the basic parameters. As a result, Raja submitted his resignation on November 14, 2010.
Subodh Kant Sahay: Union tourism minister and Ranchi MP Subodh Kant Sahay allegedly recommended Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2008 to allot coal blocks in Jharkhand and Chattisgarh to his younger brother Sudhir Kant Sahay's company SKS Ispat and Power. After the appearances of such reports in media, the government was heckled and subsequently Sahay resigned.
Sriprakash Jaiswal: His name appeared in coal block allocation scam which has caused a lot of embarrassment for the government.
New Delhi: The arrest of Union Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal’s nephew Vijay Singla for accepting bribes in connection with the promotion of a senior railway official has brought another minister in dock.