FM office bugging likely to be raised in Parl



New Delhi: The issue of alleged bugging of Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee's office is expected to be raised in the monsoon session of Parliament beginning Monday.

An opposition leader raised the matter at a meeting of the chief whips convened by Parliamentary Affairs Minister P K Bansal earlier this week.

A senior minister said the government response on the matter will depend upon the way any opposition request on the issue is framed.

The alleged snooping of the offices of Mukherjee and his aides in the North Block in September 2010 had triggered a controversy with the opposition BJP terming it a "serious matter" and demanding clarification from the government.

Mukherjee is said to have urged the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to order a secret inquiry into the "serious breach of security in his office" in the form of "planted adhesives" in 16 locations in a possible surveillance attempt.

The PM had directed a probe by Intelligence Bureau, which conducted an investigation and found "nothing".

Meanwhile, with several court pronouncements seen as encroaching the domain of the Executive, political leaders cutting across party lines demanded a debate on judicial activism during the monsoon session, which will continue till September 8.

Demands for debates on Mumbai bomb blasts, Telangana, price rise, train accidents, coal block allocation, black money and links of several leaders and intellectuals with ISI operative and lobbyist Ghulam Nabi Fai were raised during the meeting of chief whips on Wednesday.

As many as 35 Bills are expected to come up for consideration and passing, while 32 new bills -- including those on Food Security, Lokpal, Money Laundering and Benami Transactions, are likely to be introduced.

PTI