Joshi to head Estimates Committee; Shanta Kumar is COPU chief

NEW DELHI, Aug 22: BJP veteran Murli Manohar Joshi, who headed the key Public Accounts Committee, has been appointed as chairman of Estimates Committee of Parliament.

Joshi took charge of the Committee on August 19 after it was constituted on August 14.

Another senior BJP leader, Shanta Kumar, has been appointed as the Chairman of the Committee on Public Undertakings.

With former Union Minister K V Thomas (Congress) taking over as the chairman of PAC, the three key financial committees of Parliament have been constituted.

The Committee on Estimates scrutinises the functioning of government ministries and departments in terms of expenditure and utilisation of funds.

It also suggests alternative policies in order to bring about efficiency and economy in administration. The 30-member Committee on Estimates has members from the Lok Sabha alone.

Under Joshi’s chairmanship, PAC had prepared the controversial 2011 draft report on the 2G scam, which had indicted former Telecom Minister A Raja and come down heavily on the PMO and the Cabinet Secretariat for not taking “corrective action”. It continued to be on its ‘unfinished agenda’ for three years.

The Committee on Public Undertakings consists of 22 Lok Sabha and seven Rajya Sabha members. It examines reports and accounts of public undertakings as well as CAG reports on PSUs.

One of the conspicuous members of the Committee on Public Undertakings is BJP veteran L K Advani. In the previous Lok Sabha, Advani was a member of the Committee on Home Affairs.

By convention, while PAC is headed by a senior Lok Sabha member from the Opposition, the Committee on Estimates and Committee on Public Undertakings are headed by senior Lok Sabha MPs from the ruling party.

While Francisco Sardina headed the Committee on Estimates in the last Lok Sabha, Jagdambika Pal headed the Committee on Public Undertakings. (PTI)


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