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PAC to decide on PM’s offer
NEW DELHI, DEC 27 (AGENCIES):
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Published on 28 Dec. 2010 12:43 AM IST
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The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament will take an “appropriate decision at an appropriate time” on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s offer to appear before it in connection with the 2G spectrum scam.
At a time the Opposition is training its guns on Government’s ‘reluctance’ for a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe into the multi crore 2G spectrum scam, Joshi said PAC is probing the scam on the basis of the report of Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report.
CAG Vinod Rai, appeared before the PAC today to explain how its report on the issue, filed six weeks ago, put the loss to the exchequer on account of the “irregularities” in the 2G spectrum allotments at Rs 1.76 lakh crore
The report on 2G spectrum scam was tabled in Parliament amid commotion on November 17. The PAC has the statutory right to look into the CAG report.
Addressing a press conference here in the capital PAC chairman and BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi said, “The CAG has explained the 1.76 lakh crore spectrum scam to the PAC. It is time for PAC to do a performable audit of the spectrum allocation.”
“PAC will look into the technicalities of distribution of spectrum, whether the spectrum policy was implemented with due process or not,” the veteran parliamentarian said. He also said allocations since 2001 could also be probed. BJP-led NDA was in power that year and Supreme Court has asked CBI to investigate all allocations since 2001.
On the PM’s offer to appear before the JPC, Joshi said he was examining every aspect of the letter.
“The PAC has got a letter from the Prime Minister in which he has repeated his offer of appearing before the PAC if it wanted. His office has submitted documents which were asked for,” Joshi told reporters.
“We will study the rules and procedures and then take an appropriate decision at appropriate time in accordance with the rules and as the situation demands. We will take a decision on the basis of the collective wisdom of the committee.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday wrote to Public Accounts Committee expressing his willingness to appear before the panel which is going into the 2G spectrum allocation scam. “To the best of my knowledge, the PAC takes evidence from the secretaries of the departments concerned or the heads of departments or the public sector undertakings,” Manmohan Singh wrote in his letter to Joshi.
“However, in view of the recent propaganda that the prime minister is unwilling yo be questioned by a parliamentary committee, I would like to inform you that I am willing to appear before the PAC should the committee choose to seek clarifications from the prime minister, though I believe there is no precedent of the prime minister appearing before a PAC,” Manmohan Singh wrote.
He evaded questions on BJP’s demand for setting up Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) to probe 2G allocation, saying as Chairman of the PAC he did not belong to any party and it was for the government to decide.

 
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