New Delhi, Apr 12 UNI | 3 months ago

Finance Minister P Chidambaram today came down strongly against the suggestion of former media advisor to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh suggesting that UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi was the real power behind UPA-I and said that he did not agree with this assessment.

In an interview to a news channel, the Finance Minister said he had always taken crucial decisions keeping Dr Singh in the loop. Never did the PM on any occasion during the last ten years had told him to consult Congress President Sonia Gandhi.

On issues which required party's views, he himself had sought the views in core committee of the party before arriving at a decision himself. However, it was a norm in the nature of party democracy that the governments did consult their parties on important decisions irrespective of their political allegiances, he said.

Mr Baru, the author of 'Accidental Prime Minister' stood by his assessments contending that the Opposition was seeking to use his 300 odd page book to denigrate the PM. If one went by his book in entirety, it could be a tool to defend the PM. As far as his remarks portraying Ms Gandhi as 'Super PM', Mr Baru said it was never a secret if one went by the stuff in the social media.

He said his labour was on stressing the point that the victory of 2009 was entirely Dr Singh's but was never acknowledged or duly attributed by the Congress.

The author went to the extent stating that Dr Singh was not allowed his choice for the post of Finance Minister. While the PM wanted C Rangarajan for the post, the incumbent President Pranab Mukherjee was appointed for the job, he wrote.

Soon after the release of the book yesterday, the Prime Minister's Office distanced itself from Mr Baru saying that he had based his book on imagination and put forth his coloured views. The PM himself had told editors of newspapers not to believe all Mr Baru was saying.

(Posted on 12-04-2014)