Public Accounts Committee likely to summon health min over Covid-19 management

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The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) is likely to summon Health Ministry officials over Covid-19 pandemic management in its meeting that is scheduled to take place on Friday, July 10.

Rajya Sabha Science and Technology panel headed by Jairam Ramesh will also meet on July 10 to discuss preparedness to deal with Covid-19 and other pandemics in the future.

After two adjournments, PAC to finally meet tomorrow. The panel will discuss and draw up the agenda for upcoming meetings, however, sources have told India Today TV that Covid-19 pandemic will be among top agendas.

The panel is likely to seek details of management of the pandemic by the Health Ministry and its officials may also be summoned to appear before the panel in its upcoming meetings. The panel has taken serious note of reports raising concerns relating to the availability of oxygen cylinders and ventilators.

Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha and Chairperson of PAC had to postpone the meeting on two previous occasions due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha’s Science & Technology, Environment, Forests, and Climate Change panel headed by Jairam Ramesh will discuss preparedness to deal with coronavirus and other pandemics in the future on Friday as well.

“No MP from South can attend Standing Committee meeting tomorrow, no one from western states can attend, only those in and around Delhi can come.’ If PM can hold VCs with CMs, if NSA Doval can have a VC with Chinese, why can’t 30 MPs hold a virtual meeting,” Jairam Ramesh tweeted on Thursday.

Jairam Ramesh had written to Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu thrice requesting Parliamentary Committees be allowed to meet virtually.

On June 10, Congress MP and Chairman of the Information & Technology Committee of the Parliament, Shashi Tharoor had also written to the Lok Sabha Speaker demanding a virtual meeting of the panel.

“As I am sure you will agree, these are challenging times for our nation and our Committees have a moral and constitutional responsibility to hold the government accountable for its actions, so as to ensure that the welfare of the people we represent is not compromised,” Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor had said.

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