THOUGH the controversy arising out of a 2G note signed by Dr PGS Rao, a deputy director in finance ministry, may have subsided at least for time being, some bureaucrats may have to answer a few uncomfortable questions in coming days. Current home minister calls it a “closed matter”, but can bureaucrats who prepared the note escape questions that may come from judiciary, JPC and opposition parties?
“Apart from the factual background, the paper contains certain inferences and interpretations which do not reflect my views,” said finance minister Pranab Mukherjee while reading out a prepared statement. He was obviously referring to the portion of the March 25, 2011 note which said then finance minister P Chidambaram could have persuaded then telecom minister A Raja for an auction of spectrum.
Finance ministry deputy director Rao’s note was reportedly sent to Vini Mahajan, joint secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office. An RTI applicant procured it through the official channels from the PMO.
Mukherjee in his statement made it very clear that it was prepared by “a group of officers” as inter-ministerial background paper indicating that officers from other ministries were also a party to the preparation of the note. According to reports, officials from PMO, cabinet secretariat, department of telecom and finance ministry were present when this background note was prepared. But the question that still remains unanswered is at what stage a few lines on Chidambaram got inserted into the note? No one but Dr PGS Rao who signed the note could have a better answer.
Read the full text of FM’s statement on the 2G note:
“A number of stories on 2G Spectrum had appeared in the media in January 2011. A view was taken that a harmonized note based on facts should be produced for use by various representatives of the government. A group of officers prepared an inter-ministerial background paper which was sent to PMO on 25th march 2011.
Apart from the factual background, the paper contains certain inferences and interpretations which do not reflect my views.
The policy of the government in 2007-2008 was continuation of the policy adopted in October 2003 and as reiterated by TRAI.”
Action and Appointmentsa) UK Bansal, a 1974 batch UP cadre IPS officer, has been appointed as the next Director General of the Border Security Force (BSF). He will take the place of Raman Srivastava who retires on October 31, 2011. UK Bansal is currently secretary (internal security) in the ministry of home affairs.