JPC meet: NDA members want focus on 2G

On the second day of the JPC meeting, NDA members wanted to know why the alleged irregularities in 2G spectrum allocation in 2008 involving the then Telecom Minister A Raja were not properly reflected in the presentations made by Telecom Secretary R Chandrashekhar.

Chandrashekhar, who briefed the 30-member Committee headed by P C Chacko on the allocation and pricing of telecom licences and spectrum during 1998-2009 yesterday, continued his presentation today.

The Committee has started examining the telecom policy pursued during the NDA rule and sought to know the quantum of losses incurred during that period.

The NDA members expressed surprise and concern that the CAG findings on the 2G issue, which is believed to have caused a presumptive loss of Rs 1.76 lakh crore to the exchequer, was not adequately reflected in the presentation by Chandrashekhar and other officials.

Taking note of the objections, Chacko ruled that the Executive Summary of the CAG report on 2G spectrum allocation would be part of today's proceedings.

BJP leader Yashwant Sinha, who was heading a Group of Ministers on Telecom issues during NDA rule and a member of the JPC, volunteered to depose as witness before the Committee on matters related to the migration package offered to telecom operators to shift from the fixed license regime to the revenue sharing model.

As DoT officials briefed the JPC on the decisions of the NDA government and recommendations of the 10th Five Year Plan, BJP leader Jaswant Singh, who was the then Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission, offered explanation on the issue.
The 10th Plan had suggested that the main target of the government should be increasing tele-density and revenue generation should not be a criteria while taking decisions related to the sector.

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