Govt to punish wrongdoers in spectrum, coal scam: PM

PM

Amidst allegations of corruption in allocation of telecom spectrum and coal mines, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today promised to punish wrongdoers and said future allotment of scarce natural resources will happen only through auction.

UPA II government has faced plethora of corruption charges in allocation of 2G spectrum when A Raja was the Telecom Minister and in allocation of coal blocks when Singh himself held the charge of the Coal Ministry.

"Allegations of impropriety are being investigated and cases of wrong doing will be punished," Singh said in his address on the occasion of the UPA-II government completing 4 years in office.

He said much has been made out of problems that arose with the way scarce resources such as spectrum and mining blocks were allocated in the past and there have been allegations of deliberate malfeasance.

"We have introduced more transparent systems for the future, i.e., auctions rather than relying on administrative allocations. The problems with past allocations are being dealt with, as they should be, under the Law," he added.

Prime Minister said the root cause of the problem has been addressed and it will not arise in future.

"But we can claim credit that the root cause of the problem, which was the perceived non-transparency in the manner of allocation, has been addressed and these problems will not arise in the future," he said.

Stating that improving the quality of governance was a major challenge, he said: "Both the Centre and the States have to act to deal with this problem. The UPA government has done more in this area than any other government."

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