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All out war in Joint Parliamentary Committee

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All out war in Joint Parliamentary Committee
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New Delhi: An all out war broke out today in the JPC on 2G scam when half of its 30 members demanded removal of the committee chief P C Chacko and the ruling party hitting back by seeking the ouster of three BJP members.

On his part, Chacko, accused by the Opposition of playing a partisan role as Chairman, ruled out quitting the post saying he would continue to do the job.

The 15 Joint Parliamentary Committee members belonging to BJP, JD(U), AIADMK, DMK, Left parties, TMC, and BJD met the Speaker and expressed "no-confidence" in Chacko on grounds of "highly partisan, unfair and prejudicial" conduct as also leakage of the draft report.

The JPC has 30 members, including Chacko. Congress, NCP, BSP and SP are supporting the chairperson. Though SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav has said prime accused A Raja should have been called by the JPC as he wanted to depose, the party does not wish to go to the extent of seeking Chacko's removal.

Amid opposition plans to corner the JPC Chairman over clean chit to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the much-talked about meeting of the panel to adopt the draft report was today postponed following death of a Lok Sabha member.

Chacko said that the new date would be announced indicating that it would be possible only next week as some members have expressed "inconvenience" if it is held tomorrow.

The NDA members submitted one letter to the Speaker against Chacko while the other parties gave separate letters.

In the letters- which were formulated by these parties in consultation with each other- the members expressed their anger at the manner in which Chacko conducted the proceedings. His behaviour has been "unfair, prejudicial and unbecoming of the post to which he was appointed", the letters said.

Members alleged that Chacko has failed in his duty to lead the JPC to bring out the truth. "Instead he has used the JPC to conceal and subvert the truth," the members said.

They also alleged that the report was leaked to the media before they were given copies.

Expressing "no-confidence" in Chacko, these members urged Kumar to immediately replace him. The 15 members later said Kumar promised that she will look into their demand.

This action from the non-Congress members was precipitated due to the cancellation of today's JPC meeting- due to the death of TMC MP Ambika Banerjee- in which the report was to be adopted. They had earlier planned to press for a vote on the draft report at today's JPC meeting.

The draft report has given a clean chit to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister P Chidambaram.

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