Feb 21, 2012 at 01:26pm IST

Cong was given permission for roadshow: Sibal

New Delhi: Union Minister Kapil Sibal on Tuesday defended Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi over the controversy surrounding his roadshow in Kanpur as part of the campaign for the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections.

The Congress leader said that the party was earlier given the permission to hold the roadshow, which was withdrawn in the last minute.

He said, "The permission was given to us on February 17. It was withdrawn on 19th. If the administration was concerned, they should have acted in time."

Cong was given permission for roadshow: Sibal

Kapil Sibal claimed that the permission for Rahul Gandhi's roadshow was withdrawn in the last minute.

"It was very well known that it was Shivratri and then administration should have acted accordingly before hand, why in last minute?" added Sibal.

The Union Minister also expressed doubts on the manner in which the FIR was registered on an urgent basis without a preliminary enquiry.

Sibal said, "A preliminary enquiry was not conducted. This manner of urgently registering an FIR without a preliminary enquiry, we have doubts."

The Congress leader also slammed Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati, accusing her government of shielding criminals.

"We do not understand the politics of filing cases of rape, kidnapping and murder against some leaders while withdrawing similar cases against others who are in their party," said Sibal.

The Union Minister further talked about the Supreme Court verdict on the 2G spectrum allocation scam, saying that there were no differenced with the apex court on the issue.

He also said that the government was trying to understand the implications of the SC ruling.

Later, the Union Minister denied that there was any major difference over the Central anti-terror agency, National Counter Terror Centre (NCTC), saying "we can have a dialogue on it".

Furnishing the details of the structure of the NCTC, Sibal said, “The power, in case of terrorism cases is with the NCTC. Under NCTC, there is a standing council – single effective council consisting of director, 3 joint directors, and heads of the anti-terrorism centre of each state.