At the same time, Rai said that a larger issue needs to be debated on what is the recourse available to a public functionary like CAG "if somebody calls him names sitting in the Public Accounts Committee (PAC)".

The comments came a day after the former MP Nirupam slapped the defamation notice for remarks that the ex-CAG was asked by him to drop the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's name from 2G spectrum allocation report.

"See, in fact, I am very happy that he has sent a legal notice. I am very happy about it, because the purpose of writing this book was to initiate a public debate on a lot of issues that concerns the public and high individuals in government," Rai said.

A major controversy has erupted over the content of Rai's new book, titled, 'The Diary of the Nation's Conscience Keeper - Not Just an Accountant', on various issues he observed during his tenure as CAG from 2008-2013, including on the role of Singh.

On his next course of action, Rai said, "Taking legal recourse is fine. It (notice) will be answered. What is the recourse that an official can take when responsible people like members of Parliament make such allegations against us?"

Nirupam has also taken objection to Rai's remarks that Congress MPs used unparliamentary language in PAC against CAG, which forced the Chairman Murli Manohar Joshi to send a written complaint to the then Lok Sabha Speaker.

"... Obviously it (notice) is a reality and I will have to answer it legally. I will do it, but another thing I want to say is that I held the office of CAG. I was in PAC meetings and that was my responsibility. These very members of Parliament seek parliamentary privileges when they are MPs, and similarly judiciary has its own privileges.”

"For a high functionary like CAG, if somebody calls him names sitting in the PAC, then what is the recourse I can take," Rai said.

Without taking any names, Rai referred to a debate held on October 31, 2011, saying "these very members had said that we (CAG) were frauds, that our reports were politically coloured, that our reports need to be withdrawn and also that reports were based on untruths".

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