PM should admit if has made a mistake on spectrum issue: CPIM

CPI(M) on Sunday said the telecom department has admitted that it had kept the Prime Minister`s Office informed on all decisions and there was "no difference of opinion" between them.

Last Updated: Nov 21, 2010, 20:36 PM IST

New Delhi: Asking Prime Minister Manmohan
Singh to accept if he had made a "mistake" on the 2G spectrum
issue, CPI(M) on Sunday said the telecom department has admitted
that it had kept the Prime Minister`s Office informed on all
decisions and there was "no difference of opinion" between
them.

Senior CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury quoted an
affidavit filed by the Department of Telecommunications in the
Supreme Court as saying that "not only was there no difference
of opinion with the Hon`ble Prime Minister, his office was
also fully kept informed of all decisions".

Copies of portions of the affidavit were circulated at
the CPI(M) press conference, along with several letters
exchanged between the Prime Minister and former Telecom
Minister A Raja on 2G spectrum allocation between 2007 and
2008.

Yechury said it was the government`s "own admission,
and not an opposition charge and Government itself and the
former Minister (A Raja) have dragged the PM`s name."

"There is always a charge against us that we are
questioning the integrity (of the Prime Minister). What we are
questioning is your infallibility and not your integrity. If
you have made a mistake, accept it," Yechury said.

He reiterated the party`s demand that the Prime
Minister should make a statement in Parliament and accept a
joint parliamentary committee probe into the scam.

"We want the JPC to be announced tomorrow. Let the
Prime Minister speak and explain, we are ready to hear him. We
are talking of a scam which is not a small issue. It could
have otherwise created a better India," Yechury said.

The estimated loss of Rs 1.76 lakh crore could have
"eliminated hunger" through a universal public distribution
system and funded universal education throughout the country,"
he said.

CPI(M) General Secretary Prakash Karat, who briefed
the press conference on the deliberations of the three-day
Central Committee meeting, said, "It is not just a question of
one Minister or Ministry. It is very clear that what happened
(on the spectrum issue) was known to the Prime Minister, the
Finance Ministry, the Law Ministry and the entire government".

He said that was why there was a need to have a JPC
probe and there were "much wider ramifications. ... Why this
massive loss was allowed to happen? Why was nothing done for
full two years".

Karat demanded action against all those guilty,
including the "corporates who colluded to deprive the nation".

Responding to Union Minister Kapil Sibal`s statement
that the 2G licences should not be cancelled, he said the UPA
was "willing to condone corporate crime. They are more
concerned about scaring investors but not about the huge loss
of funds".

PTI