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HindustanTimes Wed,17 Sep 2014

JPC on 2G scam set for stormy finale today

Nagendar Sharma, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, April 24, 2013
First Published: 23:51 IST(24/4/2013) | Last Updated: 01:34 IST(25/4/2013)

Around two years after it was set up, Thursday's final meeting of the hopelessly divided Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probing the 2G spectrum scam could throw up a scenario, which has never been seen before in the parliamentary history of India.

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This JPC-  set-up in 2011 after the opposition did not allow the 2010 winter session of Parliament to function demanding probe into the scam-  after 56 meetings is set for a stormy finale.

With the ruling UPA and its outside supporting parties and a combined opposition having almost equal numbers in the 30-member panel, JPC chairman PC Chacko is likely to come under fire for the alleged leak of the draft report last week.

Though Congress can breathe easy as the JPC chairman is elected by both houses of Parliament and the demand for his removal is not tenable.

This, however, will only be an indicator of things to follow. The opposition is determined to force a vote on the draft report and will go all out to get it rejected, since the draft gives the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and finance minister P Chidambaram a clean chit.

Never in the history of JPCs, since the first such panel was formed in 1987 to probe Bofors scam, has voting taken place to determine the fate of the report.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/Images/Popup/2013/4/25_04_pg8a.jpg

Though Chacko has maintained that if the opposition members insist on voting, "then the rules do permit it," but the UPA will try its best to avoid voting, which is fraught with risks.

In case the opposition manages to get the draft report rejected, it will be a major embarrassment for the government. On the other hand, even if the UPA wins , it will have to get the report approved by both houses of Parliament, where again numbers game will be a problem - atleast in the Rajya Sabha.


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