Govt gives further hints on JPC

Posted By: Pti
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New Delhi, Feb 15 (PTI) Government today gave furthersignals about the formation of a JPC to probe the 2G scam, butthe BJP''s demand for widening its scope was rejected by theCongress.

"You will have no problems on that score", ParliamentaryAffairs Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal reportedly told Chiefwhips of various political parties at a meeting ahead of theBudget session when they raised the issue of JPC.

The whips apprehended that it would be difficult forboth Houses to run if the Opposition demand for the JPC is notacceded to.

BJP upped the ante by demanding that the JPC should probeall scandals like the CWG, the Adarsh Housing society besidesthe 2G scam.

Addressing a party rally in Kolkata, senior BJP leader LK Advani also attacked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh saying hesympathised with him and described him as "weak".

Seeking widening of the scope of JPC, he said, "All casesof corruption, including 2G spectrum, CWG and defence landscam (Adarsh Housing) should be probed by it."

The BJP veteran said that a JPC probe into 2G spectrumallocation would expose the DMK but Congress'' "involvement" inCWG and Adarsh Housing scams'' would be revealed if a JPC wasformed to investigate all corruption cases.

At the AICC briefing, Congress spokesman Manish Tewariparried questions on Advani''s demand but the unease in theruling party was palpable with a senior leader dubbing theOpposition move as ''shifting the goal post''.

Tewari''s refrain was that Parliament should run andissues should be discussed on the highest forum of democracy.

"Opposition should not run away from debate. The demandfor JPC should not be used as a cover to escape debate. Itshould not be a subterfuge to run away from interactions.

Running away form interactions is not a solution," Tewarisaid.

A senior Congress leader speaking on condition ofanonymity, however, said that the Opposition''s habit of"shifting the goal post" raises question mark on their"intent" on whether they wanted to allow the House to functionor not.

The leader also disapproved of the demand for getting CWGand Adarsh housing society also probed by JPC saying these arenot related to policy decisions unlike the 2G issue.

The formation of a JPC did not figure at the meeting ofthe Union Cabinet today with the government giving enoughhints beforehand to the opposition that it has now virtuallyremained a formality. More PTI SPG AMR MS

During an all-party meeting earlier this month, Mukherjee had given a clear hint about government''s intention on the JPCissue by significantly remarking: "No price is high forrestoring the functioning of Parliament".

The entire Winter Session was a washout with theopposition disrupting the proceedings of Parliament demandinga JPC probe into 2G spectrum allocations.

Meanwhile, names of senior leaders V Kishorechandra Devand P C Chako are doing the rounds in Congress circles to headthe JPC.

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