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Cong, BJP locked in confrontation in JPC meet

August 22, 2012 21:55 IST
The Bharatiya Janata Party and Congress were on Wednesday locked in a confrontation in the Joint Parliamentary Committee on 2G scam with members of the main opposition storming out of its meeting over the issue of calling Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister P Chidambaram and threatening to quit from it.

Amid growing bitterness between ruling and opposition side in the 30-member JPC, all the five BJP members present at the meeting walked out, claiming that Congress members had used foul language when they pressed for calling Singh and Chidambaram.

The BJP members insisted that it was necessary to call Singh and Chidambaram for a 'fair investigation' into the 2G spectrum allocation scam of 2008. Congress members opposed the demand, saying such senior ministers should not be subjected to "insult" just for 'political gains' of BJP.

JPC Chairman P C Chacko said there was no provocation for the walkout and it was a 'pre-determined' step.

BJP members -- Jaswant Singh, Yashwant Sinha, Dharmendra Pradhan, Gopinath Munde and Ravishankar Prasad -- left the meeting about two hours after JPC assembled to  finalise the list of persons who shall depose before the Committee.

They indicated that they were contemplating quitting the JPC, saying a decision on this would be taken later.

Chacko had circulated a draft list of 107 persons, including Manmohan Singh and  Chidambaram besides BJP leaders Sushma Swaraj and Arun Shourie, for finalisation.

During the meeting, BJP's Jaswant Singh said the prime minister and Chidambaram should be called before the JPC.

Congress MP Deepender Hooda charged the BJP with politicising the issue and converting the proceedings into a 'kangaroo court' (a mock court which has no regard to principles of justice).

This triggered angry protests by BJP and a war of words during which even CPI member Gurudas Dasgupta took objection to use of such terms.

PTI
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