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Leaders of previous govt indulged in corruption; kept personal interest above national interest: PM

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: March 31, 2019  | 14:03 IST

New Delhi, Mar 31 (PTI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi Sunday attacked the previous Congress-led UPA government, saying its leaders indulged in corruption and kept personal interests above national interests. He also alleged that the previous government "lacked" political will to test fire the anti-satellite missile despite the country having the capability to build it. The prime minister also took on the entire opposition, saying they were chosen for the task by the people, but they failed to live up to their responsibility. He alleged that the opposition raked up all the wrong issues like national security and seeking proof of Balakot air strike thus questioning the armed forces. He only referred to "proof" but did not mention air strike or Balakot. "Why seek proof ... why talk in favour of Pakistan," he quipped. Modi also said that his government has the political will to withstand pressure and take immediate decisions in national interests. "Delaying decisions of national interests amounts to criminal negligence," he said at the launch of TV9 'Bharatvarsh' news channel here. Noting that his government believes in "commitment not confusion" Modi alleged that those who earlier ran the country created hurdles in the path of development due to "corrupt behaviour". He alleged that these in power in the past chose "personal interest before national interest". "Were not they responsible to make things (system) fool-proof to check corruption ... but the intent was not honest," he claimed. He said the then government delayed the decision on forming a special investigation team to probe black money. "We decided to set up the SIT in our very first Cabinet meet," he said. He alleged that the previous UPA government took little initiative in bringing back black money and entered into "weak" agreements with foreign governments in this regard. "Now we have reworked agreement with Mauritius ... Switzerland will now provide information (on black money of Indians) on realtime basis from this year," he said. He alleged that while the previous government gave scams such as 2G spectrum allocation, Commonwealth Games, Bofors howitzer and AgusthaWestland helicopter, his dispensation is moving about things in a very transparent manner. Without naming the Rafale jet deal, he said the Supreme Court found nothing wrong in his government's defence preparedness after going through documents. Without naming former Union minister P Chidambaram, PM said the Congress leader thinks he is very intelligent. "He said the Asat launch should have been kept a secret. By that yard stick, why was the Pokhran (nuclear test) not kept a secret (during Congress rule in 1974) ... I can understand the visits to courts (in alleged cases of corruption) can be kept a secret," he said taking a dig. Referring to black money, he said when the government was framing The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, he was under immense pressure by those who knew it would hit them hard. "There was phone banking then. A phone call would go and banks would issue loans. Then more loans were issued to pay back the previous loans ... we have changed that," he said. In an oblique reference to fugitive jeweller Nirav Modi, he said properties worth more than the scam he had allegedly indulged in have been attached by investigative agencies. Addressing the gathering, he said his government has decentralised things and focus in now on states. "Earlier, everything was launched a Vigyan Bhawan," he said. Referring to Hyderabad House where government hosts foreign heads of states and governments, he said they to are being hosted outside Delhi. "International platforms where Pakistani propaganda used to echo now listen to India and our views find a place," he said. PTI NAB NAB DV DV

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