The parliament panel examining the 2G spectrum scam has finished gathering evidence and will not summon P Chidambaram or any other minister to depose before it after all. The BJP, which had demanded that the Home Minister depose, is likely to come good on its threat to walk out of the committee.
The main opposition party, which has six members on the 30-member joint parliamentary committee or JPC, had said last year that all its MPs would resign if the deposition list did not include the Prime Minister and Mr Chidambaram who was the Finance Minister in 2008, when the then Telecom Minister A Raja allegedly scripted the telecom swindle, giving away 122 licenses and precious spectrum at throwaway prices.
JPC chief and Congress leader PC Chacko confirmed after a meeting of the committee today that no more witnesses would be summoned. The stage, he said, was set for the final preparation of the JPC report.
BJP member Yashwant Sinha made it clear where his party stood when he said before today's meeting, "The PM or Chidambaram must appear before the JPC to place before it the government's side of things," adding, "it seems the JPC investigation is heading nowhere."
The BJP had boycotted three meetings of the JPC last year, but had later resumed attending them, while sticking to the demand the list of witnesses include political leaders and specifically, Mr Chidambaram. Mr Chacko had rejected the demand saying there was no consensus in the committee on this - Congress members had opposed the summoning of Mr Chidambaram.
Even if the BJP members do quit the JPC, the Congress, Left and other parties will continue to participate in the preparation of the final report. The Left parties are expected to file a dissent note.