Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chief and BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi should clarify his stance on the controversy over the 2G spectrum losses mentioned in the draft report of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), Union minister Manish Tewari said on Friday.
The controversy arose after principal auditor RP Singh told television channels that the CAG's 2G report had been influenced by Joshi and the loss figure mentioned in the report was presumptive and restored despite having been deleted by him in the draft.
"What is extremely important is that (in) May 2010, when the draft report is prepared by RP Singh, the loss is quantified at Rs20,645 crore. But in November 2010, (when) the report is presented before the parliament, the loss jumps to Rs1.76 lakh crore," Tiwari told reporters.
Stating that former CAG officer RP Singh had levelled a serious allegation, Tewari said Joshi should clear his stand. "Who is responsible for the 2G loss figure in the report?" he asked.
The revelations sparked a furore with Congress leaders demanding a reply from the BJP as well as the CAG. "I believe the issue will be discussed in the Parliament too," said Parliamentary affairs minister Kamal Nath.
Meanwhile, Joshi told mediapersons said, RP Singh did not report the inflated figures when he was called to depose before the JPC while being in service. Now, post-retirement, he has levelled the allegations.
About having influenced the CAG report on 2G spectrum, Joshi said it is not possible as the report was prepared by the CAG officials themselves. Singh has alleged that CAG officials were influenced by Joshi, who would routinely call them.
"It is a part of that campaign which is aimed at maligning or silencing constitutional bodies, like PAC and CAG, which have the time and again pointed fingers at the government's flawed economic policies," said Joshi to mediapersons.
Alleging that RP Singh's expose was a cover-up attempt on part of the government, Joshi said the real aim was to discredit the CAG. "It's the last such attempt," he added.