Oppn To Boycott House Standing Panels

New Delhi, July 26 | Updated: Jul 28 2004, 04:59am hrs
Carrying its campaign against tainted ministers forward, the Opposition NDA on Monday decided to boycott the standing committees of Parliament protesting the confrontationist attitude of the UPA government, a move Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee described as unfortunate.

It was unanimously decided that unless the government changes its attitude towards the Opposition and makes amends for the uncalled-for attacks on the Opposition, the NDA shall not join any Parliamentary committee, NDA convener George Fernandes said emerging from a meeting of top leaders of the BJP-led alliance here.

In Kolkata, Mr Chatterjee appealed to the Opposition to reconsider the decision and urged it not to stay away from the committees.

Later, BJP general secretary and spokesman Arun Jaitley told reporters that the alliance was pushed into taking this decision as the space for a vigilant Opposition in a democracy is being denied to us.