New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday accepted his responsibility for appointing PJ Thomas as Central Vigilance Commissioner (CVC) in Rajya Sabha - a day after doing so in the Lok Sabha.
"We respect the verdict of the Supreme Court. There has been an error on our part...I take full responsibility," said Manmohan Singh while accepting responsibility.
The Supreme Court on Thursday quashed the appointment of Thomas as the CVC.
"I was not aware of case in palmolein case against Thomas till Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj raised it at the committee's meeting," said the PM.
The Prime Minister also said, he believed that vigilance matters must have been looked into as Thomas was earlier appointed Kerala Chief Secretary and Secretary to the Government of India.
The shortlisting was done by Minister of State in the Department of Personnel, the Prime Minister informed the House.
"I am also minister incharge of DoPT and therefore I accept responsibility," he said.
In reply to the Prime Minister's statement, Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley said, "The institution of the CVC should be made more strong. Errors, which PM pointed out, should not be repeated in the future."
Jaitley also questioned, "Was high power committee knew about the charge against one of the candidate for CVC? Why person who had chargesheet was preferred over the two other who had relatively clearer record?"
"We want to know why a person (Thomas) who was chargesheeted chosen over two others who had a clean record," said Jaitley.
"PM has been gracious enough to accept responsibility, but whoever was responsible for pushing the name of Thomas (for CVC) must be made accountable," he added.
"Parliament must be told what pressure was there on the Government for appointing Thomas as CVC," said CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury.