Speaker snubs Joshi, returns PAC report

CIOL Bureau
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NEW DELHI, INDIA: In an apparent snub, Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar has returned the controversial report of the Murli Manohar Joshi-led Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on the 2G spectrum allocation that had criticised Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for his "indirect" role in the alleged telecom scam.


Joshi, the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) senior leader, had gone ahead with the report and submitted it to the speaker though a majority of the panel members had rejected it.

Meira Kumar has returned the report to Joshi, sources in the panel told IANS.

This would mean that the report would not be tabled in parliament now and Joshi has to re-submit it after getting it passed by the panel.


The veteran BJP leader submitted the report to the speaker April 30.

The report was critical of Manmohan Singh and alleged that he had an "indirect" role in the spectrum allocation scandal. It also criticised P. Chidambaram, who was finance minister when then IT and communications minister Andimuthu Raja sold scarce radio waves to private telecom firms allegedly at throwaway prices, causing the nation colossal loss of revenue.

The 270-page report on the controversial 2G spectrum allotment was rejected by 11 of 21 members of the panel belonging to the Congress, the DMK, the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).


Joshi, while submitting the report to Meira Kumar's office, had hoped "that the speaker will accept it and place it in parliament".

But according to committee rule, reports cannot be tabled in parliament if a majority of the panel members do not approve it.

The term of the Joshi-headed panel expired on the day he submitted the report to the speaker. He had asserted that PAC reports cannot have notes of dissent appended to them, and said that the members, who rejected the report, had no authority to do so. "This is wrong to say that 11 people have rejected it. That is unconstitutional."


Joshi said the PAC, a highly empowered committee of parliament to oversee government spending, could not be run on party lines.

The Congress's Saifuddin Soz, who had led the party members in disapproving the report, refused to comment on the development. "I don't know about it. I cannot say anything at this stage," said Soz, who moved a resolution rejecting the draft report April 28.