People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)

Vol. XXX

No. 18

April 30, 2006

Minister's Flip-Flop!


The following are the excerpts of the comments made by the union civil aviation minister Praful Patel to CNN-IBN in an exclusive interview with Karan Thapar on April 23, 2006.


Karan Thapar: The strike was called off after your letter of February 4. In that letter, you set up the tripartite committee.


Praful Patel: I set up a tripartite committee but that tripartite committee is not an assurance for Mumbai and Delhi. We said we will discuss Mumbai and Delhi's employees' issue.


Karan Thapar: I am quoting from that letter to you. In your letter of February 4 when you set up the tripartite committee, you said it will look into "the issues and proposals of modernising airports by the AAI. That language does not exclude Mumbai and Delhi. The Left parties believe that you have a commitment not to make reversible changes regarding Delhi and Mumbai until the tripartite committee report is finalised. This is why the Left will come down unto you like a tonne of bricks.


Praful Patel: Anyway, I am not going to go into the jargon. This is very categorically made to them and clearly spelt out that we are not discussing Mumbai and Delhi.


Karan Thapar: But they don't accept it. And your letter doesn't exclude Mumbai and Delhi. You may have drafted the letter wrongly, but it certainly doesn't exclude it.