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2G scam: Reworked PAC report sparks row

Sunday August 07, 2011 02:06:49 PM, IANS

New Delhi: The parliament appears set for another round of fireworks this week with Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairman Murli Manohar Joshi's reworked report on the 2G scam eliciting sharp reaction from United Progressive Alliance (UPA) members of the panel Sunday.

Joshi had circulated the reworked report among the PAC members Saturday. The report is understood to question the role of the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) and former finance minister P. Chidambaram in the 2G scam.

The UPA members Sunday demanded the removal of Joshi, a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader, from the post of the chairman of the PAC and accused him of being "interested in politics".

Congress MP and PAC member Sanjay Nirupam rubbished the reworked report, saying it "deserves to be thrown into the dustbin".

Nirupam asked why the opinion of constitutional experts was not included in the report.

In a forwarding letter sent to PAC members Saturday, Joshi stirred a fresh controversy saying that he was sending them the draft report again after consulting constitutional experts, rules of procedures and "past precedents".

On June 28, Joshi had tried to place the report before the new PAC, but he did not succeed due to fierce opposition from UPA members of the panel.

Meira Kumar had returned the report on grounds it was not supported by the entire PAC.

Joshi was reappointed as chairman of the PAC in May after the term of the previous PAC ended April 30.

The reworked report is set to create a furore in parliament and could prove embarrassing for the government which is trying hard to fend off a slew of corruption charges.

Last time round, Joshi's report on the 2G scam was rejected by the UPA members in the PAC, but this time, the change in the composition of the panel will make it difficult for them to do so.

In the 21-member committee, nine members support the report, but nine are against it. Three members of the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) are neither supporting it nor opposing it and one seat is vacant.





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