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Office of profit: EC clears charges against PM, FM
September 22, 2006 21:06 IST
The Election Commission on Friday cleared Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister P Chidambaram of the charge that they held offices of profit.
The EC sent its opinion to President A P J Abdul Kalam in this regard in the light of Parliament (Prevention of Disqalification) Amendment law, 2006, EC sources said.
Petitions were referred to the EC against the prime minister and the finance minister on the ground that they were holding offices of profit as trustees of Rajiv Gandhi Foundaton.
However, under the latest amendment, the office of chairperson or trustee (by whatever name called) of any trust, whether public or private, would not attract the disqualification clause.
Kalam gave his assent to the Parliament (Prevention of Disqalification) Amendment Bill, 2006, a day after Parliment approved setting up of a Joint Committee to define what constitutes such an office.
The presidential assent to the law with retrospective effect was aimed at providing relief to several members of Parliament.
The EC also cleared the names of Union Minister Subbirami Reddy, senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader Najma Heptullah and Narayan Singh Manaklav, the source said.