Will not oppose demand for JPC probe into Adani issue for sake of Opposition unity, says Sharad Pawar

NEW DELHI: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) president Sharad Pawar on Tuesday said although his outfit does not agree with the demand of anti-BJP parties for a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe into allegations against the Adani group, it will not go against their stand for the sake of Opposition unity.

The former Union minister had earlier said the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would have a majority if a joint House panel is formed given its numerical strength in Parliament and this would lead to doubts on the outcome of such a probe.

“The opinion of our friendly parties (on JPC) is different from ours, but we want to maintain our unity. I gave my opinion (on futility of JPC probe), but if our colleagues (Opposition parties) feel that JPC is a must then we will not oppose it. “We don’t agree with them (Opposition parties), but for the sake of Opposition unity, we will not insist on this (that there should be no JPC),” said Pawar in an interview with Marathi news channel ABP Majha.

On Saturday, the Rajya Sabha MP had told reporters he is not completely opposed to a JPC probe into the charges against the Adani group, but a Supreme Court-appointed inquiry committee will be ”more useful and effective” in dealing with the matter.

Following Pawar’s remarks, seen as a setback for Opposition unity, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh had said the NCP may have its views on the issue, but 19 like-minded parties are convinced the ”PM-linked Adani group” issue is real and very serious.

The veteran parliamentarian said if a JPC is formed, looking at the BJP’s numerical strength in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha, the ruling party will have 14-15 members in the panel, while the Opposition will have five to six MPs.

”The panel will also be headed by the BJP. So who will control the panel and what will be its influence on the report?” Pawar had asked, seeking to drive home the point that a parliamentary probe committee will have a limited scope.

Instead, a Supreme Court-appointed panel should probe the issue, the NCP leader had added. The Supreme Court last month ordered setting up of a six-member committee headed by a former apex court judge to look into various regulatory aspects for stock markets, including the recent Adani group shares crash triggered by the Hindenburg Research’s fraud allegations.

The US-based Hindenburg Research has made a litany of allegations, including fraudulent transactions and share-price manipulation, against the business conglomerate. The Adani group has dismissed the charges as lies, saying it complies with all laws and disclosure requirements.

Source: Press TRust of India

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