Govt to make statement on Baalu on Wed | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Govt to make statement on Baalu on Wed

delhi Updated: Apr 29, 2008 21:37 IST

Against the backdrop of opposition's belligerence on the row involving T R Baalu's "confession", the government will make a statement in Parliament on Wednesday amid Congress' attempts to cushion the PMO and distance itself from the Union Minister.

Petroleum Minister Murli Deora will make the statement in Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs V Narayanasamy informed the Upper House which saw uproar for the fifth consecutive day on the issue.

Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha L K Advani alleged that Prime Minister was heading the "most corrupt" government in India's history and he was duty-bound to make a statement on the Baalu issue.

The BJP as also opposition AIADMK have been demanding the resignation of Baalu who admitted in the Rajya Sabha that he had 'put in a word' to the Petroleum Minister on the issue of gas supply to the firms owned by his family members.

The AICC briefing saw party spokesperson Jayanti Natarajan seeking to insulate the PMO in the matter of letters written to the Petroleum Ministry to expedite gas supply.

The refrain of Natarajan was that the PMO had merely forwarded the letters "without endorsing" and there was "absolutely nothing inappropriate" in the "routine matter".

Natarajan, who faced a volley of questions, steered clear of all questions including whether the party was distancing itself from Baalu as also whether his case was similar to that of K Natwar Singh, who resigned in the wake of Iraqi food-for- oil scam, and whether a Union Minister should be above suspicion.

"Let us move to some other issue", Natarajan remarked when reporters persisted whether Baalu should step down.

Congress leaders have been suggesting that any action against Baalu would depend on the intra-party dynamics in the DMK.