No wrongdoing by Manmohan, his PMO in Commonwealth Games: Parliamentary panel

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New Delhi, April 11 (IANS) The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament has virtually absolved former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the then Prime Minister’s Office of any wrongdoing in the Commonwealth Games held here in 2010.

PAC Chairman K.V. Thomas on Tuesday said the committee has found “nothing that the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh or the PMO (Prime Minister’s Office) did out of the way”.

The PAC is set to present its report to Parliament on Wednesday.

“You will get the entire report tomorrow. One important point is that there is nothing against the then Prime Minister in it… Everything is black and white,” Thomas told reporters outside the House.

“There was a meeting chaired by the Prime Minister, decisions were taken, and when the minutes (of the meeting) came, the then Sports Ministry said the spirit of the decisions was not carried in the minutes.”

“There is nothing that Manmohan Singh or the PMO has done out of the way,” he added.

Thomas said there was unanimity on the findings and conclusions of the report, and pointed out that in the 24-member PAC, only four members were from the Congress while the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had 12 members.

On the delay in presenting the report on the Commonwealth Games, Thomas said it was due to the large number of reports that the PAC had to go through.

In the last three years, the PAC under Thomas held 157 meetings and presented 73 reports. The 74th report is slated to be tabled in Parliament on Wednesday.

THomas said the PAC report on the 2G spectrum sale will be tabled in Parliament before April 30, which is the last working day of the current committee.

The outgoing PAC Chairman also said that he has suggested to the Speaker that media should be allowed to listen to the deliberations of the PAC during its meetings.

“The other suggestion I mooted is that the PAC recommendations should be binding on the government,” Thomas said.

Thomas had earlier also mooted the suggestion that the PAC Chairman too should be consulted while appointing the Comptroller and Auditor General of India.

“The PAC is an institution that must be strengthened. Persons may come and go, but the institution must be preserved. It is mother of all parliamentary committees,” said Thomas, who headed the PAC for three consecutive terms since 2014.

–IANS

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