Sack Tharoor, probe if foreign funds are in IPL: Advani to govt

via HK published on April 17, 2010

NEW DELHI: BJP Parliamentary Party head L K Advani on Saturday demanded that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh sack Shashi Tharoor after his name figured in the Kochi IPL team ownership controversy, alleging the Minister of State for External Affairs had committed “gross impropriety”.

Speaking at a function in New Delhi, Advani also asked for a thorough probe in all aspects of IPL bidding and also investigate whether foreign funds were involved in it.

“The Prime Minister must drop Shashi Tharoor, Minister of State for External Affairs, from the council of ministers because of gross impropriety unbecoming of the office he is occupying,” Advani said.

He demanded that it also needs to be probed whether Tharoor is also guilty of abusing his office to secure pecuniary advantage for himself or “for some other person”.

BJP had earlier stalled Parliament on the issue and demanded that the Prime Minister should, immediately after his return from abroad, explain why Tharoor had still not resigned.

“The government should conduct a thorough probe into all aspects of the IPL bidding and ensure that all transactions in this popular tournament remain above board. No wrong-doer must be spared,” Advani said.

Other demands of the veteran BJP leader include a look at the tax haven accounts of bidders and others associated with IPL.

“The Prime Minister must share with the country the outcome of his government’s negotiations with countries in whose banks Indian wealth is known to be stashed away,” Advani said, broadening the focus of his demands to include his pet issue of Indian black money stashed abroad.

He lamented that the weaknesses in our current economic system have made it possible for dishonest and unscrupulous people to amass huge wealth by bending and flouting the laws of the land.

“They are using even a popular sport like cricket for scandalous self-enrichment,” he said.

“News about the IPL raises suspicions that many of the bidders have been registered in obscure tax havens abroad. It is precisely the secret or benami accounts in these tax havens that have been used for stashing away lakhs of crores of Indian money abroad,” Advani insisted.

During the last Lok Sabha elections, BJP had raised the issue of Indian black money kept in foreign tax havens.

“The Prime Minister promised action in this regard within one hundred days of assuming office. But even after the lapse of nearly one year, nothing has happened,” Advani said.

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