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2G scam: Decision on PM's appearance before PAC at an appropriate time, says Joshi

By Nairita Das

New Delhi, Dec 27 (ANI): Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Chairman Murli Manohar Joshi on Monday said a letter has been received from the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, adding that a decision on his appearance before the panel in connection with the 2G spectrum scam would be taken at an appropriate time.

"Today, the PAC has received a letter from the Prime Minister in which he has reiterated his proposal that he had said at an open conference (Congress party conclave) recently that if required, he is ready to appear before the PAC," said Joshi.

"He has also said that the information, which the PAC had asked for have been sent. We have received the letters in huge quantities, we will know once we go through in-depth and whatever action needed would be done," he added.

Joshi further said that in the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report, three modules have been suggested, which would give three amounts of the loss of money in the scam and the PAC will discuss and see which module is authentic and should be used.

"They have given three kinds of modules, which will result into three different amounts. This would be an issue for argument and the committee would see which module is genuine, how much should be the actual loss and how much is calculated. That is their view, our committee will discuss and decided over it," he said.

Joshi also mentioned that the PAC has to avail the permission of the Lok Sabha Speaker prior to summoning any Minister before it.

"No Minister can be called unless the Speaker takes a decision on that. PAC can only decide things, which are permitted to be decided, no standing committee, no committee can call this people," he said.

Earlier today, Dr. Singh wrote to Joshi saying that he is ready to appear before the panel in connection with the 2G-spectrum scam.

Earlier, on December 20 at the Congress' 83rd plenary meet, Dr. Singh made an unprecedented offer of appearing before the PAC, saying he has "nothing to hide".

"I sincerely believe that like Caesar's wife, the Prime Minister should be above suspicion and it is for this reason that I am prepared to appear before the PAC even though there is no precedent to that effect," Dr. Singh had said.

Meanwhile, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India Vinod Rai deposed before Joshi in connection with the 2G scam.

Rai appeared before the 22-member PAC, chaired by Joshi in Parliament House.

The meeting is scheduled to go on through the day, with only a two-hour break.

The 96-page report submitted to Parliament on November 16 said the presumptive loss to exchequer through spectrum allocation to 122 licencees and 35 dual technology licences in 2008 was Rs.1, 76,645 crore.

The meeting with Rai comes a few days after the PAC had asked for views and suggestions from individuals and organisations on the 2G spectrum allocation.

"Taking into consideration the importance of the subject and the nationwide interest evinced in it, the Committee has decided to invite memoranda containing views/suggestions from various individuals, experts, associations, institutions, organisations interested in the subject matter," it said. (ANI)

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