BJP bats for small parties in JPC
Playing the role of a responsible opposition and unity seem to be the twin strategies that the BJP is adopting as it gears up to raise the pitch against corruption.delhi Updated: Feb 22, 2011 23:52 IST
Playing the role of a responsible opposition and unity seem to be the twin strategies that the BJP is adopting as it gears up to raise the pitch against corruption.
The party is batting for the inclusion of smaller opposition parties in JPC and readily agreed to restrict the JPC to the 2G spectrum issue alone, without enlarging its mandate to cover Adarsh and CWG scams.
Senior BJP leader LK Advani set the tone for this approach when he suggested at the all-party meeting with the Speaker on Sunday that the JPC should be large enough to accommodate all parties.
The government has been talking of a 21-member JPC till now, with 14 from the Lok Sabha and seven from the Rajya Sabha. The BJP's own quota - parties' quotas here are in accordance with their numbers - works out to be 5.5, sources said.
Toeing Advani's line, party leaders seem inclined to a larger JPC comprising 30 members - 20 from the Lok Sabha and 10 from the Rajya Sabha - which will help it both reach out to smaller parties for Opposition unity and ensure effective presence of allies like JD(U).
Parliamentary affairs minister Pawan Bansal told Leader of the Opposition Sushma Swaraj that he would be able to share with her the number of members and terms of reference only by Wednesday.
Asked why the BJP agreed to a JPC only on 2G , Swaraj said, "If we would have insisted on CWG and Adarsh too, opposition unity would have suffered as many opposition parties were content with a JPC on 2G spectrum allocation alone. Also, we wanted the House to function rather than another session being washed out and decided to settle for a JPC just on 2G."