With finalisation of the 2G spectrum allocation report on the JPC agenda, fireworks are expected at Friday’s crucial meeting.
With the appointment of a nominated member of the Rajya Sabha — Ashok Ganguly — in the place of the DMK’s Tiruchi Siva, the balance in the 30-member Joint Parliamentary Committee has tilted in favour of the United Progressive Alliance and it is to be seen how Chairman P.C. Chacko of the Congress will ahead with the report.
Communist Party of India MP and JPC member Gurudas Dasgupta told The Hindu that he would present a dissent note in the meeting. He took objection to Mr. Chacko’s decision to convene the meeting on a day when the Parliamentary Standing Committee of the Finance Ministry too is scheduled to meet. “This is not the way the JPC meeting should be convened.”
Communist Party of India (Marxist) MP and JPC member Sitaram Yechury has already submitted a dissent note charging that the Committee had failed to live up to its mandate by not quizzing Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on the issue.
DMK’s lone representative in the Committee, T.R. Baalu, who has been repeatedly asking Mr. Chacko to examine the former Telecom Minister (and his party MP) A. Raja, hit out him, saying: “It appears that whenever it suits you, the term of the JPC gets extended, but whenever a request is made for examination of records or witnesses, paucity of time becomes an issue.”
“…the manner in which the JPC is rushing ahead does not inspire confidence,” he said and urged the Chairman to get various records, documents and affidavits — filed by the Department of Telecom before the Delhi High Court/Supreme Court and in reply to the CAG’s queries — for examination by the JPC.
The JPC’s draft report absolved both Dr. Singh and Mr. Chidambaram of any wrongdoing, forcing some of the members to make a representation to Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, asking for Mr. Chacko’s removal from chairmanship.
It is to be seen what stand the AIADMK, which has a lone member, M. Thamibidurai, takes in the meeting.