Thursday, March 3, 2011

CVC posting: Manmohan’s explanation sought

New Delhi, March 3, 2011

The opposition on Thursday mounted a strong attack on the government after the Supreme Court quashed the appointment of P.J. Thomas as CVC and asked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to explain how the "mistake" was committed and who would take responsibility for it.

Opposition parties also asked the government to make a statement in Parliament considering the "serious" nature of the issue which has dealt "yet another blow to the credibility" of the UPA.

The issue was raised both in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha soon after the Supreme Court struck down the controversial appointment of the CVC.

Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley said, "Serious strictures against the government" by the Supreme Court "vindicates great national aspirations."

Demanding a statement, he asked, "Is the government going to fix the accountability for how and why this happened?"

He spoke after BJP members created uproar over the issue with some of them trooping into the Well, chanting slogans like "woh sarkar nikami hai, jo brashtachar ko rok na paye (a government which cannot stop corruption is incompetent)."

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Ashwani Kumar said he would convey the sentiments of the BJP to the government.

In the Lok Sabha, Deputy Leader of BJP Gopinath Munde raised the issue.

"The Supreme Court has declared the appointment of Thomas as illegal. This is a serious matter," Mr. Munde said. "We want the government to make a statement and tell the House where the mistake was committed by the government," he said.

Senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj said on Twitter, "Dignity of the office of CVC has been restored".

BJP spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad asked, "Will the Prime Minister own up the responsibility." He said Mr. Singh must give an explanation to the nation.

"In the committee (which selected Thomas), Sushma Swaraj had clearly stated 'don't appoint him because a corruption case is pending against him.' Yet, he was appointed," he said.

"...We see the insistence of the PM that he (Thomas) should be appointed. The Prime Minister must explain to the nation," Mr. Prasad said.

He said his party seriously suspected that Mr. Thomas was appointed to "somehow influence the CBI investigation into the 2G spectrum scam".

Mr. Prasad pointed out that the CVC is monitoring the CBI probe into the spectrum issue and that Mr. Thomas was also a telecom secretary

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