Stand-off between Govt, BJP over coal files resolved

Last Updated: Wed, Sep 04, 2013 09:57 hrs

New Delhi: The stand-off between the government and main Opposition BJP was resolved today after an agreement that a discussion on missing coal files issue would be taken up immediately in both Houses of Parliament.

The end to the impasse came after two rounds of discussions that Finance Minister P Chidambaram and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath had with top BJP leaders L K Advani, Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley.

At the meeting, the Ministers asked BJP to allow proceedings in the two Houses so that important legislative business including Pension Bill and Land Acquisition Bill could be taken up, sources said.

However, BJP leaders insisted that the issue of coal files needed to be taken up on priority, particularly in the wake of reports that a senior CBI officer had sought questioning of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in connection with allocations made when he held the Coal portfolio between 2006 and 2009.

BJP said that after debate on coal issue, it would allow continuation of discussion on Pension Bill in the Lok Sabha and consideration of Land Acquisition Bill in the Rajya Sabha.

Finally, the agreement was reached, under which a debate was taken up on coal issue.

BJP leadership is upset over the manner in which the Prime Minister had left both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha immediately after reading out a statement on the missing files pertaining to the coal block allocations yesterday.

BJP leaders wanted to seek clarifications on his statement but were not allowed.

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