Fight corruption, 93-year-old freedom fighter tells Sonia, PM

Sunday, December 19, 2010

NEW DELHI - A 93-year-old freedom fighter Sunday asked Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to fight against corruption even at the cost of sacrificing the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government.

Ram Vilas Pandey, the freedom fighter from Uttar Pradesh, made this appeal to Manmohan Singh in a brief speech he made.

“Let the government go, but punish those guilty… be it (former communications minister) A.Raja or (Tamil Nadu Chief Minister) M. Karunanidhi,” he said.

Pandey said that Manmohan Singh and Gandhi had a clean image and it was necessary for them to fight against corruption.

“Being the top leader you should punish them if anyone is found guilty……it does not matter whether the government remains,” he added.

He also referred to the Local Area Development Fund for MPs, and said Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has taken the right decision by ending a similar facility for state legislators.

“Forty percent of the fund ends up being paid as commission…now I hear the MPs want the fund to be increased from Rs.2 crore per annum to Rs.5 crore,” he said.

The prime minister shook hands with Pandey after his speech.

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