2G scam: Trinamool may go with Cong on JPC issue

Trinamool Congress, which has been supportive of the clamour for a Joint Parliamentary Committee probe into the 2G spectrum allocation scam, may go with the Congress if it accepts the opposition demand.

Last Updated: Feb 05, 2011, 15:33 PM IST

New Delhi: Trinamool Congress, which has
been supportive of the clamour for a Joint Parliamentary
Committee probe into the 2G spectrum allocation scam, may go
with the Congress if it accepts the opposition demand.

The major ally has decided to go with the Congress
saying, "We have no objection to JPC if the government accepts
it", Trinamool Congress sources told.

Banerjee has already made it clear that being a UPA
ally, her party would go with whatever stand the coalition
government at the Centre takes in the matter.

Earlier the party had said they were willing to
support the demand for JPC probe into the spectrum issue.

However, the party wanted a debate on the issue in
Parliament. "Let us hear the opposition view on their demand
for a JPC. Let us also hear why the government has so far
refused to accept it", they said.

The statement came a day after Trinamool Congress
chief Mamata Banerjee had a crucial meeting with Finance
Minister Pranab Mukherjee in Kolkata in a bid to strengthen
unity between their parties ahead of the upcoming Assembly
elections in West Bengal.

The two leaders are understood to have discussed ways
to end the stalemate in Parliament due to the opposition`s
insistence on JPC probe into the 2G spectrum allocation scam
which led to a washout of the entire Winter Session.

The Trinamool chief has asked party`s Chief Whip in
Lok Sabha, Sudip Bandopadhyay, to attend the all-party meeting
convened by Mukherjee on February eight, authorising him to
explain the party`s stand there.

When contacted, Bandopadhyay said from Kolkata
that he would attend the meeting. "Being the second largest
party in the UPA coalition, we have a major role to play. We
are with the UPA", he said.

Apart from issues relating to Parliament, the two
ministers are also believed to have discussed issues like
finalisation of the dates of the assembly polls, deployment of
central security forces in view of apprehension of violence
ahead of the elections, party sources said here.

"We have apprehensions about violence in the run-up to
the polls. Deploying central forces in the state is not
adequate. They are not enough in numbers," the sources said.

After the hour-long meeting last night, the Finance
Minister had said, "We discussed how to deal with such a
situation unitedly since Congress has an alliance with
Trinamool Congress and both are working together in the Union
Cabinet and running the UPA government".

Trinamool leaders stressed the need to improve
coordination and increase interaction between Congress and
its partners.

Like UPA-I when there used to be regular meetings
between the leaderships of Congress and the supporting Left
parties, UPA-II should have such meetings every two to three
months, the sources said.

Lack of such coordination has led UPA partners to take
varied stands on key issues like the petrol price hike, they
said while referring to street protests by Trinamool Congress
activists in Kolkata a few weeks ago to protest the Centre`s
move.

"All issues which directly affect the people should be
discussed with the coalition partners. Nothing should be done
unilaterally. There should be more interaction between allies
and this is what Congress President Sonia Gandhi herself
wants," the sources said.

PTI