Accusing the Congress of using "money power" to win the trust vote, the CPI(M) on Friday said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had "bettered the record" of his predecessor P V Narasimha Rao for indulging in "immoral and shady practices" to remain in power.
The party alleged that at least 16 MPs belonging to opposition non-Left parties were "bought over, intimidated or blackmailed into either voting for the government or to abstain."
"Can there be any greater shame for the Prime Minister and the Congress leadership? But the worrying thing is that there is no sense of remorse or guilt at these immoral and shady practices.
"Such is the degeneration of the Congress party in its lust to remain in office," CPI(M) General Secretary Prakash Karat said in a signed article in the forthcoming issue of the 'People's Democracy.'
Maintaining that Manmohan Singh had "bettered the record" of Rao whose government acquired a majority after "seven MPs were purchased," he said the victory of the UPA government was "tainted by the use of money power on a scale never seen before in the corridors of power in New Delhi."
Karat asked how long will the UPA government last, if offers of "a berth in the union cabinet, threats of unleashing investigating agencies against unwilling opposition MPs and bribes running into crores of rupees have enabled to survive."
Observing that the Congress would have to go to the people in the next few months, he said "a just punishment awaits them."