The Congress on Monday launched a scathing attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, asserting that Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation (GSPC) defaulted on Rs.19,700 crore bank loan under his tenure as the chief minister.“The Gujarat government-owned GSPC had borrowed Rs.19,700 crore from 15 banks to find gas. Our dramatic prime minister had stated in 2005 that GSPC would discover India's biggest gas deposit. Eleven years are gone and no gas was discovered and GSPC has to repay the banks Rs.1,800 crore annually in terms of interest alone when its income is hardly Rs.80 crore. This is a scam of unprecedented proportion,” senior Congress spokesperson Jairam Ramesh told reporters at Parliament House.
He added that the government is acting on liquor baron Vijay Mallya who has allegedly siphoned off Rs.9,000 crore as it is under the pressure from the public, media and opposition parties.“Why government is not acting against those who are responsible for the GSPC scam? That is because the issue reaches the door of the prime minister. If Vijay Mallya's fraud is a person's scam, the scam of GSPC is a company's scam where a person is involved till the highest level of it.
The scam could not have happened without the knowledge of the then chief minister,” Ramesh said. He also asked: “Why Gujarat government had not declared GSPC bankrupt? Or why it was not declared a non-performing asset?” Ramesh accused the government of politicising the National Investigative Agency (NIA). “NIA has become Narendra Investigative Agency. That is the reason why people linked to RSS who were involved in various cases being investigated by NIA have got acquitted in the tenure of this government,” Ramesh said. He was replying to a question on NIA's clean chit to Col. Purohit in the Samjhauta Express blast case.