JPC probe from 1998

JPC probe from 1998

This means it is tasked with probing the decisions of the then NDA government which ruled from 1998 to 2004 besides those of UPA which assumed power in 2004.

Moving a motion for appointment of the JPC in Lok Sabha on Thursday, finance minister and House Leader Pranab Mukherjee stated that the panel will give its report by the end of the monsoon session of Parliament which will be by second week of August.

The committee will have a strength of 30, of which 20 will be from Lok Sabha and the rest from Rajya Sabha. The minister announced the names of the members of Lok Sabha in the committee. Either senior Congress leader P C Chacko from Kerala or six-time MP from Andhra Pradesh Kishore Chandra Deo will head the panel.

Terms of reference

One of the terms of reference of the committee is: "to examine policy prescriptions and their interpretation thereafter by successive governments, including decisions of the Union Cabinet and the consequences thereof, in the allocation and pricing of telecom licences and spectrum from 1998 to 2009".

The panel has been called upon to examine “irregularities and aberrations”, if any, and the consequences thereof in the implementation of government decisions and policy prescriptions from 1998-2009, and to make recommendations to ensure formulation of appropriate procedures for implementation of laid down policy in the allocation and pricing of telecom licences.

These terms of references are agreed to by the ruling coalition and the Opposition after a few meetings held over the last one week.

The setting up of the committee formally ends the deadlock over the issue which had washed out the entire Winter session of Parliament.

The list of JPC members from Lok Sabha include: PC Chacko, Manish Tewari, Jai Prakash Agarwal, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, V Kishore Chandra Deo, Deependra Singh Hooda, Nirmal Khatri and Praban Singh Ghatowar (all Congress); Jaswant Singh, Yashwant Sinha, Harin Pathak and Gopinath Munde (all BJP); DMK's TR Baalu, Kalyan Banerjee of Trinamool Congress, Janata Dal-United's Sharad Yadav, Bahujan Samaj Party's Dara Singh Chauhan, Samajwadi Party's Akhilesh Yadav, Communist Party of India's Gurudas Dasgupta, Biju Janata Dal's Arjun Charan Sethi and AIADMK's M Thambi Durai.

Members from Rajya Sabha and the chairman are likely to be announced on March 1 when a debate on the motion takes place in the Upper House. While the Congress has not finalized on its three members who would be in the panel from RS, the other likely names are: SS Ahluwalia and Ravishankar Prasad [both BJP], Sitaram Yechuri[CPM], Tiruchi Siva[DMK], Satish Mishra[BSP], R P Singh[JD-U] and Yogendra Trivedi[NCP].