Embarrassed over allegations against senior party leader and Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairman Murli Manohar Joshi that he sought meetings with corporates involved in the 2G scam, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Saturday said the charges were baseless and were an attempt to malign the parliamentary panel.
"These allegations are baseless. This is an attempt to malign the PAC's image. Actually the BJP raised the 2G scam first and former telecom minister (A. Raja) is in jail because of it," BJP Rajya Sabha member Tarun Vijay told reporters.
The remark came after NRI Anshuman Mishra, who was dropped soon after being backed for a Rajya Sabha seat from Jharkhand, alleged that Joshi, who heads the PAC looking into the 2G scam, and a "female friend" of his had asked him to arrange meetings with companies who allegedly benefited from the 2G scam.
According to Mishra, Joshi had sought the meetings with officials of companies when the PAC was investigating the 2G scam.
Mishra further claimed that Joshi repeatedly approached him for funds during the 2004 and 2009 general elections and said his phone records would prove this.
Stating he respected Joshi, Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari said: "Given the nature of allegations by a BJP-supported Rajya Sabha candidate who was forced to withdraw because of internal party differences, I leave it to Joshi's conscience as to what his course of action should be."
Mishra had earlier attacked party veterans LK Advani, Yashwant Sinha and Shanta Kumar for putting a spanner in his efforts to get a seat in the upper house of Parliament.