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Opposition should apologise to nation: Pranab
New Delhi, Dec 23 (IANS):
Published on 24 Dec. 2010 12:09 AM IST
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A day after he offered an olive branch in the form of a special parliamentary session on the spectrum scam, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee was in a combative mood, asserting that the opposition should "apologise" for not letting parliament function the entire winter session.
"They have destroyed the institution. They should apologise to the nation," Mukherjee told reporters here Thursday.
He pointed out that it was the opposition that had stopped parliament from functioning this session.
On Wednesday, Mukherjee said he was ready to call a special session of parliament to debate the need for a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe into the 2G spectrum scam.
"If they (opposition) assure that there will be a debate, I am ready to call a special session of parliament before the budget session," he said.
The opposition had reacted negatively to the suggestion, remaining adamant on the protest for a joint parliamentary committee.
"We have done a lot of talking. Now it is time for action," said BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman.
According to the Communist Party of India's D. Raja, there was "nothing new" in the government's offer for a special parliament session on 2G. "JPC is a reasonable demand. The government should not shy away from it."
Earlier, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had offered to appear before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) but the opposition had rejected it, stating they were sticking to the demand for a JPC.

Don't want debate, we want JPC, says BJP
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Thursday did not agree to Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee's offer of a special session of parliament on the 2G spectrum scam, saying it did not want a debate but a joint parliamentary committee (JPC) to probe the issue.
"We do not want a debate on the JPC but want the JPC," senior BJP leader and Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj told reporters here.
The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) also raised doubts about the offer, saying it had been made in a strange manner.
The opposition has been demanding a joint parliamentary committee (JPC) to probe alleged irregularities in the allocation of 2G spectrum which caused huge losses to the national exchequer.
CPI-M leader Nilotpal Basu said the party had not taken a view on Mukherjee's offer. "It has come in strange fashion," Basu told IANS.
Communist Party of India (CPI) leader D. Raja said the JPC was a reasonable demand and it was for the government to explain why it was shying away.
Finance Minister Mukherjee Wednesday said he was ready to call a special session of parliament to debate the need for a JPC probe into the spectrum scam, adding he was "sad" he could not end the winter session logjam.
Mukherjee Thursday, however, slammed the opposition for not having let parliament function in the winter session, saying they should "apologise".

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