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BJP divided over questioning of PM

Source : BUSINESS_STANDARD
Last Updated: Sat, Aug 11, 2012 18:50 hrs

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is a divided house in the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC), as some senior leaders of the party are demanding that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and former finance ministers of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) be called for questioning in 2G spectrum allocation scam probe.

However, what has come as a surprise to the senior party leaders is that the younger leaders of the party are not in favour of calling the PM and UPA ministers for questioning because the Congress has demanded that if UPA ministers are called for questioning then they would insist on calling politicians who served as ministers in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) regime, such as Sushma Swaraj, Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha, Jagmohan and members of the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government.

Congress members are also supporting the younger BJP leaders over the issue of not calling the prime minister and other ministers of the UPA, and are hoping there would be a consensus within the BJP on the issue, and the parliamentary committee could start preparing the report.

The JPC has completed questioning most of the bureaucrats in the 2G spectrum allocation scam probe, and only politicians and members of industrial houses are left for questioning on the issue.

Though a larger number of members agree on the issue of calling members of industrial houses who had benefitted from the 2G spectrum allocation, there is no clarity on calling ministers to the JPC.

“An one-upmanship battle is going on in the JPC, where a section of BJP leaders have demanded that the prime minister and some UPA ministers be called for questioning but most of the other members are not of the same view. The last meeting got delayed because of the Vice-Presidential election,” said those in the know of the development.

JPC members are also looking at the possibility of calling former telecom minister A Raja for questioning, because the former DMK minister is very keen to appear before the parliamentarians and present his side of the story.

Members of the JPC are concerned if Raja is called for questioning then it would be difficult for the Congress not to allow other ministers to be called for questioning before the committee.




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