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Gopinath Munde to be new chairperson of PAC

BJP is understood to have conveyed to Speaker Meira Kumar that its Deputy Leader in Lok Sabha Gopinath Munde will be the candidate for the post of Chairperson of Parliament's Public Accounts Committee.

Sources said BJP's decision to appoint Munde as PAC Chairman and senior leader Yashwant Sinha as head of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on External Affairs was conveyed to the Speaker. The post of PAC Chairperson, which goes to the main opposition, fell vacant after expelled BJP leader Jaswant Singh resigned from the post.

Munde, who was recently appointed Deputy Leader after the elevation of Sushma Swaraj as Leader of Opposition, will continue to head the PAC till March 31 as the chairperson is chosen for a period of one year. He, however, is likely to get elected as chairperson again when it comes up for renewal.

Traditionally, BJP has given the post of PAC Chairman to the Deputy Leader but had made an exception in 2009 to placate Jaswant Singh, who reportedly wanted a room and staff in Parliament. He had earlier enjoyed these privileges as Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha till he was elected from Darjeeling in the last Lok Sabha elections.

Sinha, who is also a member of the PAC and was considered the front-runner for heading it, will be the new Chairperson of the Standing Committee on External Affairs, another post vacated by Swaraj.

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