Finance minister Arun Jaitley has not denied the possibility that the name of a former UPA minister was in the black money holders’ list.
“I am neither confirming nor denying, only smiling,” Jaitley said in an interview to Times Now.
Meanwhile, the Congress lashed out at the government on the issue of bringing back black money, saying it should come out with the entire list of names and not be vindictive.
In reply, the BJP asked, “Why is Congress upset over black money probe?”
“If any ex-UPA minister is named, will Congress top leadership take responsibility?” BJP questioned the Congress.
Congress has asked the Modi government not to resort to “blackmail” on the issue of naming black money holders and dared it to come out with full information without indulging in “selective leakage”.
A day after Arun Jaitley’s remarks that disclosure of names of those holding illicit foreign accounts will embarrass Congress, party general secretary Ajay Maken said the government should desist coming out with “half truths” and “selective leakage”.
“Congress is not going to be blackmailed under any such threat…Do not try to blackmail us. Stricter possible action should be taken against whoever is involved in it but that should not be inspired by vindictiveness and it should also not be half truths,” he told reporters.
The issue of black money has led to a war of words between the ruling BJP and Congress.
The Modi government, which promised to bring back black money stashed by Indians in foreign banks, toed the line of UPA regime by informing the Supreme Court on October 17 that it cannot disclose such details given by countries with which India has double taxation avoidance agreement (DTAA).
As Congress accused the BJP government of “practising “hypocrisy” on the issue, Jaitley on Tuesday said, “The names (of black money account holders) will be public shortly… I can assure you there is no embarrassment I (BJP) will have when all the names are disclosed. There is some embarrassment the Congress party will have because of those names”.
Reacting sharply to Jaitley’s remarks, Maken said, “There is no need to blackmail Congress. Whatever names they have, they should reveal and act as they have a government. They should not try to blackmail us.
“We also tell them not to limit the declaration of names only to 136 individuals. We want to tell the BJP and the Prime Minister that half truth is not the truth. They should not go for selective and vindictive leakages. They should come out with all the names.”