Two days before the crucial Supreme Court hearing of the 2G spectrum case, solicitor general Gopal Subramanium offered his resignation, but it was later rejected by law minister M Veerappa Moily.
The immediate provocation was apparently the government's reported decision to engage a private lawyer, Rohinton Nariman, in Subramanium's place for Monday's hearing.The flare-up showed a sense of unease within the government on the sensitive case, which has already claimed two ministerial resignations.
"Everything will be amicably resolved and Subramanium will stay as solicitor general," a top law ministry official said.
Subramanium's quit offer came less than a week after the government brought him back to head its legal team in the 2G case, but he was asked to return the file related to the affidavit filed by an NGO against telecom minister Kapil Sibal and attorney general GE Vahanvati.
Subramanium came back to the case seven months after he was replaced by Vahanvati in November 2010.
The move had followed the Supreme Court's direction to the PMO to file an affidavit on the delay in deciding the sanction to prosecute Raja.
The government, however, was forced to revise its strategy recently after Vahanvati stopped appearing in the case, following objections by the petitioner, Subramanian Swamy, on the ground that since he had given a legal opinion to Raja, he (Vahanvati) cannot represent the government in this case.
Subramanium declined to comment, but his office denied that his decision was linked to any particular incident.