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Updated: November 22, 2010 12:06 IST

Govt convenes all-party meet to end impasse in Parliament

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Opposition members raise slogans demanding a joint parliamentary committee probe into alleged scams in the 2G spectrum allocation.
Opposition members raise slogans demanding a joint parliamentary committee probe into alleged scams in the 2G spectrum allocation.

With the logjam continuing in Parliament over the opposition demand for a JPC probe into the 2G spectrum controversy, Government has convened an all-party meeting this afternoon to end the deadlock.

Leader of the Lok Sabha and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee has invited leaders of all parties for a luncheon meeting to discuss a way out to end the impasse in Parliament as both Houses have not been able to transact any business since the winter session commenced.

The government is expected to make an appeal to them to allow Parliament to function during the meeting.

However, the government and opposition are still sticking to their respective stands on the demand for a JPC probe.

“We are firm on our demand for a JPC probe into the 2G Spectrum issue,” said Deputy Leader of Bharatiya Janata Party in Rajya Sabha S. S. Ahluwalia.

Mr. Mukherjee had a meeting with Home Minister P. Chidambaram and Defence Minister A. K. Antony in the morning here.

NDA leaders also had a floor coordination meeting and decided to take a view on the issue of allowing Parliament to function after the all-party meeting.

“Mukherjee has called a meeting of all party leaders in the noon to discuss the issue,” JD (U) president Sharad Yadav told PTI after the NDA meeting.

Mr. Mukherjee had earlier held discussions with the opposition leaders on the issue on November 15 but the matter could not be resolved.

Both the Congress and the government have so far ruled out constitution of JPC and have maintained that the CAG report should be sent to PAC in the normal course as the parliamentary committee is competent to look into the issue.

He said the PAC or any Parliamentary committee can call anybody before it for inquiries just like the JPC.

Parliament adjourned

Earlier, both the Houses of Parliament were adjourned till noon today following uproar over various charges of corruption by members of the opposition and treasury benches.

As soon as Speaker Meira Kumar read out obituary references in the Lok Sabha, Opposition members trooped into the well demanding a Joint Parliamentary Committee probe in the alleged irregularities in 2G spectrum allocation.

Congress members were also seen in the aisles waving placards ‘Punish Yeddyurappa to protect Karnataka from mining mafia’, ‘Book Bellary Brothers’, ‘Sack Yeddyurappa’

As Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury (Cong) sought to enter the well, he was asked not to do so by an angry Leader of the House Pranab Mukherjee.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister P K Bansal was also seen urging Congress members not to enter the well.

Amid sloganeering by opposition members including BJP, AIADMK, SP, Shiv Sena and counter-slogans from Congress members, Kumar adjourned the House till noon.

It was trouble from the word go in Rajya Sabha as Opposition BJP and AIADMK members trooped into the well the moment Chairman Hamid Ansari took his seat.

The opposition members raised slogans demanding constitution of a JPC to look into the alleged irregularities in allocation of 2G telecom spectrum.

Their protest was countered by ruling Congress members who raised the issue of land scam in Karnataka.

Some members carried banners demanding dismissal of the Karnataka Chief Minister. Some others carried banners reading ’Book Bellary Brothers’ as they moved into the aisles.

Ansari took up the first listed question of the day and asked members not to display any banners.

“No banners please,” he said, but members did not relent.

Mr. Ansari then adjourned the House till 1200 hours.

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