Addressing a press conference in the national capital, BJP stalwart said, 'The UPA leadership is weak and lacks willpower to curb corruption, which is rampant in the country. It has failed to live up to the people's expectation and provide and transparent and accountable governance.'
Advani, while referring to the series of graft allegations leveled against the Congress-led UPA government, said, 'The UPA government has lost its credibility due to the emergence of several cases of corruption like the 2G spectrum allocation scam, blackmoney and rising prices of essential commodities.'
The BJP leader continued by saying that the UPA government's lack of action in improving the situation has only added to the people’s growing anger and frustration.
Shifting his focus to the issue of blackmoney, Advani said, 'It is sad that the government of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has not done enough to bring back the illegal money stashed in tax havens abroad.'
Vowing to raise the issue during his nationwide campaign, Advani demanded the government to immediately issue a White Paper on its progress regarding the issue and also reveal the names of the biggest tax defaulters.
'Though I will raise the issue of rampant corruption, price rise and extreme poverty that exists in the country during my Jan Chetna Yatra, issue of black money stashed away abroad will figure most prominently,' Advani told reporters.
Advani said within two years of Manmohan Singh returning to power as Prime Minister, the situation in the country had 'gone from bad to worse' and everyday there was a new scam stumbling out of the closet.
He said his yatra would create awareness among the countrymen on the huge resources and potential the nation had. 'But we will not tolerate corruption and extreme poverty in the country 64 years after independence, and we will not tolerate the issue of black money,' he added.
'For the last so many years, I have been saying that huge sums of Indian money have been stashed away abroad in foreign banks, especially in Switzerland,' he said, recalling that during the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) regime, India had raised the issue with Switzerland, though the latter expressed its inability to return the money or share information on the depositors due to their banking secrecy laws.
Advani stated, 'People generally ask us as to what we did about black money when we were in power for six years. I tell them before this the Swiss government never allowed us to access the information.'
However, due to pressure from the US and European countries, the banking secrecy laws were altered by Switzerland recently to allow access to the depositors' details.
'In 2009, I had rigorously raised the issue of black money during Lok Sabha elections and before that I wrote to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh saying that when the banks in Switzerland, despite their banking secrecy laws, are returning money to other countries like America and Germany, why can't India get its money back,' he asked.
Advani said he had asked the Prime Minister to bring pressure on the Swiss authorities to get the illegal money back to India.
'But unfortunately, he did not take any action in this regard. And when I asked him to at least reveal names of those Indian nationals who had stashed away money abroad, which was our right to know, he did not reveal that either,' he said.