2G scam: Congress backs Sibal says CAG shouldn't tell MPs how to speak

Published: Friday, January 14, 2011, 21:00 [IST]

New Delhi, Jan 14 (ANI): Backing Union Communications and Information Technology Minister Kapil Sibal over his recent remarks on the 2G spectrum issue, the Congress on Friday hit out at the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) saying that it was improper of the CAG to tell that MPs cannot comment on its report when the document is being examined by a Parliamentary Committee.

Congress spokesperson Jayanthi Natarajan said that it was improper of the CAG to tell MPs how to speak.

"There is no rule that prohibits a MP from speaking on a CAG report while it is being considered by the Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC)," said Natarajan.

Without directly naming Sibal, the CAG on Wednesday said no person including a Member of Parliament should make or publish a statement or comment on the matter.

"No person including a Member of Parliament should make or publish a statement or comment about that matter. The CAG goes on to say that making public comments on the matter which is being considered by a Parliamentary Committee is highly improper and may even amount to contempt of the House," said a statement released by the CAG.

Sibal on January 7 challenged the CAG's report on the 2G spectrum scam, saying the figure of Rs. 1.76 lakh crore is utterly erroneous.

"Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) figure of Rs. 1.76 lakh crore is utterly erroneous. The losses were much lower and that over Rs. 100 crore had been recovered after the government sent out notices," he told reporters.

Kapil Sibal, however, said he respected the CAG, but was extremely pained at the methodology adopted by CAG for arriving at 2G spectrum (loss) figures that have no basis.

The Minister said he agreed with the CAG on two counts - one, that there was something wrong with the rollout of the telecom policy and two, that there was criminal culpability and which is why the CBI, under the Supreme Court, was investigating the matter.

Former Telecom Minister A Raja was forced to resign last month after a report of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) faulted him for undervaluing spectrum to favour companies who were largely ineligible for 2G spectrum, and added that the government had probably lost Rs.1.76 lakh crore in estimated revenue. (ANI)

 

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