Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader LK Advani on Wednesday said he liked Manmohan Singh "when he was not the prime minister".
Speaking to reporters in Panaji, the former deputy prime minister, who is on a nationwide anti-graft Jan Chetna Yatra, also said calling Singh a weak PM was not a "harsh critique".
"When he was not a prime minister I liked him. He served very efficiently as PV Narasimha Rao’s finance minister, but we did not expect courage from him then,” Advani said sarcastically.
“Calling him a weak PM is not harsh,” Advani said adding the country had now realised in retrospect that the BJP’s constant castigation of Singh’s governance in the past had substance.
“People earlier used to say ‘he is an honest man, why do you keep attacking him’. Now they tell me, what the BJP was saying all this while is right,” he said.
The BJP leader also said the record of both Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi in the battle against corruption was “highly unsatisfactory”.
Advani also critiqued the Congress’ efforts to put the blame for the 2G spectrum scam on United Progressive Alliance (UPA) partner DMK, whose former minister A. Raja is in prison on corruption charges.
“I have always stated that the massive 2G spectrum scam was not an ally affair alone. It has deeper roots in the higher level of government, including involvement of the ministers of the Congress in the union government and their role needs to be investigated,” Advani said.