President criticises V.P. Singh’s role as FM in Bofors deal

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New Delhi, Jan.28 (ANI): Criticising the then Finance Minister V.P. Singh for “having failed to take action on his own in the Bofors irregularities”, President Pranab Mukherjee has in the second volume of his autobiography ‘The Turbulent Years 1980-1996’ stated as a Finance Minister, it was his job to ensure that the purchase of the Bofors guns took place according to rules and regulations.

“He could not simply say that he was not kept informed. Hardly anything can move in the government without a Finance Minister being in the loop,” he said.

“The Bofors controversy happened at a time when I was not part of the Congress, and hence, I have little insider knowledge about it, however, I am, willing to state on record that as V.P. Singh’s predecessor in the Finance Ministry, it is impossible for me to believe his claims regarding the issue and the actions he went on to take,” says the President.

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“If V.P. Singh had found something wrong with the Bofors proposal, he could have brought it to the notice of the Prime Minister immediately, and if the Prime Minister refused to listen to him, he could have taken action on his own,” he said, adding that the Bofors issue proved to be one of the causes of his (Rajiv Gandhi) undoing in the 1989 Lok Sabha elections, though no charge has been substantiated against him till date. (ANI)

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