New Delhi: The Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) meeting which was scheduled to finalize its report on 2G spectrum scam on Thursday has been postponed. The 30-member JPC, which is divided over the content of the report, was scheduled to meet at 3 pm.

"The meeting has been postponed and is likely to be held next week," a source said. Earlier in the day, the Congress core group met to discuss the matter. The meeting was attended by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Defence Minister AK Antony, Finance Minister P Chidambaram and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath.

The draft JPC report, which was reportedly leaked in media recently, suggests that the losses to the public exchequer was caused due to faulty allocation of spectrum and licences by former telecom minister A Raja, clearing Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister P Chidambaram.

The JPC is divided over the culpability of Raja, whose note submitted to the panel states that everything he did was known to the Prime Minister. In 2011, an entire Winter Session of the Parliament was washed out as the BJP did not allow proceedings in the both Houses demanding a JPC probe in this matter.

The reports of hefty losses to the exchequer surfaced after the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) figured out a presumptive loss of Rs.1.76 lakh crore in the allocation of 2G spectrum licences.

Chacko’s clarification

Dismissing the reports that meeting was cancelled as Congress apprehended defeat in the panel over adoption of the report; JPC Chairman PC Chacko said that the decision was taken following the death of Lok Sabha member Ambika Banerjee. "The JPC meeting scheduled for today at 3 PM stands postponed. There is request from members from various parties that the meeting be postponed because of the demise of a sitting member (Ambika Banerjee)," Chacko said.

"I really wanted to have the meeting today (Thursday) and I was not able to proceed with that decision. Because courtesy demands and also it is a precedent," Chacko added.

Lok Sabha was adjourned on Thursday without transacting any business as a mark of respect for Trinamool Congress member Ambika Banerjee who died in a Kolkata hospital on Thursday.

Opposition JPC members demand removal of Chacko

Meanwhile, non-15 members from BJP, JD-U, TMC, Left, AIADMK, DMK and BJD met Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar demanding Chacko's removal as JPC Chairman. JPC has a total of 30 members.

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.


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