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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

JPC in 2G spectrum scam unlikely to meet in June

PTI  New Delhi, May 18, 2013
First Published: 19:02 IST(18/5/2013) | Last Updated: 19:04 IST(18/5/2013)

The much-delayed meeting of the Joint Parliamentary Committee on 2G spectrum scam is expected to take place in June amid sharp differences between members over its controversial draft report which gave a clean chit to the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the finance minister.

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JPC chairman PC Chacko said in New Delhi that the panel would meet in June. "Now plans are to hold the meeting in June as members are now busy with tours of various parliamentary committees," he told reporters.

The JPC was to meet on April 25 to adopt the draft report. However, the meeting was postponed following the death of a sitting Lok Sabha member.

The next meeting of the Committee is expected to be crucial as Chacko could try to get the report adopted if numbers favour UPA.

Fifteen members from Opposition parties, including of former UPA allies DMK and Trinamool Congress, had earlier written separate letters to Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar contending that they have "no confidence" in the JPC Chairman and had appealed to her to immediately remove him.

They had also rejected the draft report "in toto".

Meira Kumar had to step in to calm the tempers and asked Chacko and other members to "sink their differences and present a report as mandated by Parliament."

While Samajwadi Party has not sought Chacko's removal, it has made it clear that until former telecom minister A Raja, main accused in the case, is not called as a witness, it would not support the report. SP has one member in the panel.

BSP, with two members, is likely to side with UPA.

The term of the JPC was to end with the budget session of Parliament. But with no solution in sight to the logjam, Chacko had sought an extension till the end of the monsoon session.

The draft report of the JPC on 2G scam had given a clean chit to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and finance minister P Chidambaram. It had charged former Raja with misleading the PM on the issue of 2G spectrum allocation.

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