Coal Scam Report: Cong to take call on Ashwani Kumar at meeting today

AshwaniKumarLaw Minister Ashwani Kumar (PTI photo)

While the Congress is yet to take a decision on Law Minister Ashwani Kumar, under fire for vetting the CBI's status report on the coal block allocations row, the party's strategists are interpreting Wednesday's Supreme Court order as a signal to the government to consider executive action before the next hearing on July 10.

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Legal eagles in the ruling dispensation were of the view that although the apex court did not directly indict the minister in its order, there were clear suggestions that the government needed to act. These views are likely to be deliberated upon by the Congress core group when it meets on Friday to take a call on the law minister's future. Sources said PM Manmohan Singh's views would be crucial in deciding the minister's fate.

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While the Supreme Court deferred its decision on constitution of a special investigating team for the next hearing, sources said the fact that it took note of senior counsel Prashant Bhushan's specific questions on the Law Minister's remit in the CBI investigation and whether his action went on to "subvert the integrity of the investigation", is being seen as serious enough in government and party circles.

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"We leave the above questions and the prayer for constitution of SIT for consideration, if necessary, at a later point of time," stated the order.

Meanwhile, Ashwani Kumar has been making the rounds of the Prime Minister's Office. He has been seen making unscheduled visits to PMO officials over the past two days. He spent a few hours in the PMO today, reaching out to officials personally even though the PM was not in his office.

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