Hope Sinha and Singh will take a cue from Singhvi

New Delhi: Congress on Tuesday said it is hopeful that BJP leaders Jaswant Singh and Yaswant Sinha will take a cue from its spokesman Abhishek Singhvi, who recused himself from the JPC to probe 2G Spectrum allocation as he had appeared for cellular operators in the court.

Though a senior leader maintained that Congress is not making an issue out of it, he said "they (Singh and Sinha) should know enough to recuse themselves."

Both the BJP members are among the 20 Lok Sabha members named for the committee.

Sinha and Singh had headed the group of ministers (GoM) on telecom as finance ministers in 1999 and 2003.

Singh`s GoM had also included Sinha, who had by then become External Affairs Minister.

A senior government functionary from the ruling party had earlier argued that the inclusion of the two leaders in the JPC would a conflict of interest and wondered how can people associated with the telecom policy examine the same policy in the JPC.

He was of the view that the party should have nominated them and if it was done, the two members should have declined to join the committee themselves.

There was an argument that these leaders could even be summoned by the JPC to give evidence as people involved in formulating the NDA`s telecom policy and hence their being members of the same JPC would create an awkward situation.

At the AICC briefing, party spokesperson Jayanthi Natarjan said, "the party has not taken any official view on it. I have nothing to say on the issue at the moment" when asked whether Congress would demand that Singh and Sinha should recuse themselves from JPC.

Singhvi, who recused himself from the Parliamentary panel, has said, "I had appeared as a senior advocate in the court for cellular operators and had attacked the telecom policies from 2002 to 2004 when Pramod Mahajan, Arun Shourie and Ram Vilas Paswan were telecom ministers (in the NDA government)."

Natarajan was today named a member of the JPC after Singhvi`s recusal. The announcement about Natarajan`s inclusion was made by Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal who moved the motion for formation of the JPC in the Rajya Sabha.