Opp. rejects Pranab offer

The battle between the government and the Opposition on the setting up of a joint parliamentary committee on the 2G spectrum allocation scam is likely to intensify further with the Opposition on Sunday rejecting outright all government suggestions on other ways to break the impasse in Parliament.

Finance minister and Leader of the Lok Sabha Pranab Mukherjee placed three suggestions before senior BJP leader L.K. Advani and Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj during the day, which included a CBI investigation into the matter to be monitored by the Supreme Court. He also offered a discussion in both Houses on the spectrum scam and one more meeting with the floor leaders in the two Houses, but made it clear that the JPC option was unacceptable.
Both Mr Advani and Ms Swaraj told Mr Mukherjee that his suggestions were not acceptable to them, and also asked how the government felt confident that the Supreme Court would pass an order directing a probe by the CBI which it would supervise.
Said BJP Rajya Sabha deputy leader S.S. Ahluwalia: “The government is primarily and constitutionally accountable only to Parliament. The best and only option in this case is a JPC probe.”
Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar was earlier keen to hold an all-party meeting at 4 pm on Monday to seek a way out of the impasse, but since both Ms Swaraj and her Rajya Sabha colleague Arun Jaitley would be away in Bhopal on Monday — to attend a function celebrating five years of the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government — this had to be postponed. It might now be held later on Monday night or Tuesday morning.
BJP sources said Mr Advani and Mr Ahluwalia were likely to lead the Opposition charge in forcing the adjournment of the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha respectively on Monday over the JPC probe demand.
The CPI(M), meanwhile, when approached for its help in breaking the deadlock, put the onus on the government for ensuring the smooth functioning of Parliament. Mr Mukherjee had telephoned senior CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury to discuss the continuous disruption of House proceedings. “We have been insisting that the spectrum issue merits an inquiry by a joint parliamentary committee. We continue with our demand,” Mr Yechury said, adding that it was the government’s responsibility to ensure that the two Houses could function. “We have always wanted Parliament to function, and even demanded a constitutional amendment to ensure that the House sits for at least 100 days a year,” he said.
The JPC demand has brought the two Houses to a standstill since November 10. This has not just united the Opposition, but even some parties backing the ruling UPA — such as the Samajwadi Party, BSP and RJD — are not opposing it. Even some UPA parties, such as the Trinamul Congress, NCP and DMK, do not think that the demand is improper. This has led to the Congress’ increasing isolation within the UPA.
Mr Mukherjee has so far had two rounds of meetings with the floor leaders in a bid to break the deadlock on the JPC issue. The Congress core committee — which besides Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and party chief Sonia Gandhi includes Mr Mukherjee, senior ministers A.K. Antony and P. Chidambaram and Mr Ahmed Patel, political secretary to the Congress president — has met twice.

Post new comment

<form action="/comment/reply/44887" accept-charset="UTF-8" method="post" id="comment-form"> <div><div class="form-item" id="edit-name-wrapper"> <label for="edit-name">Your name: <span class="form-required" title="This field is required.">*</span></label> <input type="text" maxlength="60" name="name" id="edit-name" size="30" value="Reader" class="form-text required" /> </div> <div class="form-item" id="edit-mail-wrapper"> <label for="edit-mail">E-Mail Address: <span class="form-required" title="This field is required.">*</span></label> <input type="text" maxlength="64" name="mail" id="edit-mail" size="30" value="" class="form-text required" /> <div class="description">The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.</div> </div> <div class="form-item" id="edit-comment-wrapper"> <label for="edit-comment">Comment: <span class="form-required" title="This field is required.">*</span></label> <textarea cols="60" rows="15" name="comment" id="edit-comment" class="form-textarea resizable required"></textarea> </div> <fieldset class=" collapsible collapsed"><legend>Input format</legend><div class="form-item" id="edit-format-1-wrapper"> <label class="option" for="edit-format-1"><input type="radio" id="edit-format-1" name="format" value="1" class="form-radio" /> Filtered HTML</label> <div class="description"><ul class="tips"><li>Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.</li><li>Allowed HTML tags: &lt;a&gt; &lt;em&gt; &lt;strong&gt; &lt;cite&gt; &lt;code&gt; &lt;ul&gt; &lt;ol&gt; &lt;li&gt; &lt;dl&gt; &lt;dt&gt; &lt;dd&gt;</li><li>Lines and paragraphs break automatically.</li></ul></div> </div> <div class="form-item" id="edit-format-2-wrapper"> <label class="option" for="edit-format-2"><input type="radio" id="edit-format-2" name="format" value="2" checked="checked" class="form-radio" /> Full HTML</label> <div class="description"><ul class="tips"><li>Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.</li><li>Lines and paragraphs break automatically.</li></ul></div> </div> </fieldset> <input type="hidden" name="form_build_id" id="form-fc7622e089764226038659904149dbdd" value="form-fc7622e089764226038659904149dbdd" /> <input type="hidden" name="form_id" id="edit-comment-form" value="comment_form" /> <fieldset class="captcha"><legend>CAPTCHA</legend><div class="description">This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.</div><input type="hidden" name="captcha_sid" id="edit-captcha-sid" value="78197009" /> <input type="hidden" name="captcha_response" id="edit-captcha-response" value="NLPCaptcha" /> <div class="form-item"> <div id="nlpcaptcha_ajax_api_container"><script type="text/javascript"> var NLPOptions = {key:'c4823cf77a2526b0fba265e2af75c1b5'};</script><script type="text/javascript" src="http://call.nlpcaptcha.in/js/captcha.js" ></script></div> </div> </fieldset> <span class="btn-left"><span class="btn-right"><input type="submit" name="op" id="edit-submit" value="Save" class="form-submit" /></span></span> </div></form>

No Articles Found

No Articles Found

No Articles Found

I want to begin with a little story that was told to me by a leading executive at Aptech. He was exercising in a gym with a lot of younger people.

Shekhar Kapur’s Bandit Queen didn’t make the cut. Neither did Shaji Karun’s Piravi, which bagged 31 international awards.