No question of suing UN: Chidambaram

New Delhi, Nov 16 | Updated: Nov 17 2005, 05:30am hrs
A few Indian companies mentioned in the Volcker Committee report on kickbacks in the UN oil-for-food programme have been asked to share with the government vital records and information, finance minister P Chidambaram said on Wednesday.

We have asked a few companies to share with us some records and information. Beyond that, I dont want to say anything, he said when his attention was drawn to the issue at the economic editors conference. It was too early to disclose anything about the investigation, he added.

Dismissing reports that claimed the Congress party and the government had threatened to sue the United Nations, Mr Chidambaram said that the partys statement was that it would issue a comprehensive legal notice seeking full disclosure on the deal. On November 3, two statements were issued one by Prime Ministers office and another by the Congress party, and nowhere was the word sue used, he added.

It may be noted that the government has already ordered a judicial probe by former chief justice RS Pathak to delve into the Volcker panels findings regarding Natwar Singh and the party.

There are about 2,400 firms in total from all over the world which have allegedly made illegal payments totalling $1.8 billion to the then Saddam government.