BJP asks Jaswant to quit as House panel chief
Posted on: 01:40 PM IST Aug 31, 2009
New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Monday asked its expelled leader Jaswant Singh to step down as Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Chairman.
The BJP is of the view that Jaswant was made PAC chairman in his capacity as a BJP leader and should step down now that he was no longer with the BJP.
A team of BJP leaders including Deputy Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj met Jaswant at his residence in New Delhi on Monday.
The 22-member Committee on Public Accounts is constituted by Parliament each year for examination of accounts showing the appropriation of sums granted by Parliament for expenditure of Government of India.
The Committee is also authorised to examine the annual finance accounts of Government of India, and such other Accounts laid before Parliament as the Committee may deem fit such as accounts of autonomous and semi-autonomous bodies.
However, the Committee is not authorised to examine the accounts of those public undertakings and government companies which come under the purview of the Committee on Public Undertakings.
While the Committee has 15 members from the Lok Sabha, seven of its members come form Rajya Sabha.
Jaswant was expelled by the BJP from the primary membership of the party for writing a book praising Pakistan's founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah on the first day of the party's chintan baithak (brainstorming session) in Shimla on August 19.
In the book Jinnah: India, Partition, Independence, Jaswant has written that Jinnah was a nationalist and has also blamed Jawaharlal Nehru for the partition of the country in 1947.
Meanwhile, BJP spokesperson Ravishankar Prasad also made it clear that there is no one Jaswant Singh can return to the party.
"Question of Jaswant Singh coming back to party does not arise," he said.