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Differences between Shourie and BJP come to the fore

Last Updated: Monday, February 14, 2011 - 23:51

New Delhi: The differences between senior
leader Arun Shourie and his party were further exposed on Monday
with the BJP openly contradicting his claims that it did not
want to raise the 2-G Spectrum allocation issue in Parliament
in 2009 despite his suggestions to do so.

"BJP has taken up the 2-G Spectrum allocation issue from
day one. Arun Shourie has himself raised this issue in
Parliament till he was a member (of the Rajya Sabha). He was
expressing the BJP view (in Parliament)," BJP spokesperson
Prakash Javadekar said in reply to a question.
Shourie had stated in an interview last week that though
he had requested Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma
Swaraj and her counterpart in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley to
raise the issue in Parliament, the two had not done so.

To counter Shourie`s contention, BJP also released
excerpts of the speech given by Jaitley in Rajya Sabha on July
23, 2009 in which he had raised the 2-G Spectrum issue.

"In 2007, an open licence regime was recommended.
Pursuant to this, the Government of India invited applications
for telecom licences setting October 1, 2007 as the deadline.
Later, the Government created an artificial date viz September
25, 2007as the cut-off date. For some curious reasons,
applications received between September 26, 2007 and October
1, 2007 were not considered," Jaitley had said in Parliament.
BJP sources also said Jaitley had referred to this issue
in a press conference during the same monsoon session in 2007.

Shourie has now been asked by CBI, which is
investigating the 2-G Spectrum allocation controversy, to
appear before it on February 21. His deposition before the
investigating agency may ruffle feathers within the BJP.

The timing of Shourie`s deposition is also significant as
the budget session of Parliament started from February 21.


First Published: Monday, February 14, 2011 - 23:51
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