New Delhi: After staging a walkout from the meeting of JPC examining the 2G spectrum scam, the BJP on Tuesday accused its Chairman PC Chacko of being 'biased' and threatened to quit the panel, saying a decision in this regard will be taken soon. Sinha charged Chacko with being 'biased' and behaving as a spokesperson of the Congress. (Agencies)
BJP leader Yashwant Sinha, who is a member of the Committee, said his party has lost faith in the panel and did not expect it to uncover the truth.
"All of us have come to the conclusion that there is no point in continuing to serve in the JPC because the manner in which the Chairman of the JPC is functioning, it is quite clear that the Joint Parliamentary Committee is not now an instrument for uncovering the truth," Sinha said.
Alleging that the Committee has become an "instrument" for "putting a cover to conceal and not indulge in honest inquiry", Sinha said, a decision on whether the BJP members would continue in the panel will be taken after discussions with the party leadership soon.
Sinha said the party will deliberate on this soon after Thursday's Bharat bandh organised by the party against the diesel price hike and FDI issues.
His statement came hours after the BJP members led by him walked out of the JPC meeting, alleging that they were being "gagged" and not allowed to speak on the issue of finalizing the list of witnesses to be called before the Committee.
The BJP members had stormed out of the last JPC meeting on August 22 also following a clash with Congress members.
"We will apprise the party leadership of all that has transpired and the party will soon take a decision soon," he said.
"I can't think of any committee where a chairman would behave like this and gag a member in a highly dictatorial manner. This is reminiscent of the Emergency... He did not behave as an impartial chairman. He truly behaved like a spokesperson of the Congress party," Sinha said.
"We, the members of the JPC, have no heart for this kind of conduct of business in the JPC. We have withdrawn from the Committee today and as far as the further course of action is concerned the party will take a call after the Bharat bandh on September 20."
He also attacked the Congress leadership of "dictating" Chacko in the running of the JPC.
"We feel very strongly that the Committee and its Chairman is not being allowed to function impartially. The direction obviously is coming from somewhere else. The Committee Chairman is being directed to behave in a certain manner and put us down in the Committee.
"In order to conceal the truth, they abused the Chairman of the PAC...In this particular case, they are misusing the position of Chairman of JPC by behaving in this dictatorial fashion and putting a purdah on the truth."
The BJP said it would prefer to bring the truth directly before the people instead of a dissent note in the JPC.
"We will certainly tell the people of the country what we perceive to be the truth. When the time comes, we certainly tell the people....When we come out with the truth, it will be stronger than the note of dissent," Sinha said.
Reiterating BJP's stand that the examination of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister P Chidambaram before the JPC was "very relevant" as witnesses, another party leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said, "There is no scope for an impartial probe by the JPC."
"I was also shouted down," Prasad said and termed today's developments at the JPC meeting as "unfortunate".
Sinha lamented that no Parliamentary Committee works on the basis of majority or minority and a panel is supposed to work on the basis of "consensus".
"None of us expected the chairman to behave in a high-handed and dictatorial manner," he said.
"It is only in the last meeting we have noticed that consensus is not in the lexicon of the Chairman. Ever since we made the demand for examining the Prime Minister and P Chidambaram consensus has finished and only dictatorship is happening in the JPC," he said.
Sinha on Tuesday said that meeting began with the chairman making a mention of his letter, in which he feared that truth should come out and the list of witnesses to be called by JPC "should not be swept under the carpet".
At this, he said, Prasad raised his hand to ask about the list of witnesses if finalised and he was not allowed to talk and other members who raised similar questions were also not allowed to do so.
"The Chairman said he will not allow any discussion on this," Sinha said, adding that "we then decided to walk out".
New Delhi: After staging a walkout from the meeting of JPC examining the 2G spectrum scam, the BJP on Tuesday accused its Chairman PC Chacko of being 'biased' and threatened to quit the panel, saying a decision in this regard will be taken soon.
Sinha charged Chacko with being 'biased' and behaving as a spokesperson of the Congress.