Thursday, December 29, 2011

Once again Lokpal Bill is in Jeopardy


Parliament tonight lost a historic opportunity to enact an anti-graft law when an embarrassed government was forced to beat a hasty retreat in the Rajya Sabha, lacking the numbers to push through the Lokpal and the Lokayukta Bill.
Initiating the debate in the Rajya Sabha, leader of the Opposition Arun Jaitley also opposed minority quota in the Lokpal bench, inclusion of NGOs and keeping CBI out of the purview of the ombudsman.

"If you are creating history, let us not create bad history. We will be leaving a lot of task for the next generation to do," he said.
He made it clear the the BJP would not support the Bill in the present form. "Please accept amendments that the colleagues have moved," he said.

Going clause-by-clause in the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Bill, 2011, Jaitley said the ombudsman was "designed to be vulnerable to constitutional challenge. Let us create an institution which is constitutionally possible."

Referring to the provision on the setting up of Lokayuktas in the state, the BJP leader and noted lawyer said it would lead to creating "a grey area" by which the Centre can usurp powers of states. "Why are you creating a constitutional havoc? The government is trying to make constitutional cocktail," he said.

Jaitley said the government wants to subvert an institution even before its creation. "You want to kill it in the womb," he alleged.

Responding to the BJP argument, Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi said that the BJP is making excuses not to pass the Lokpal bill. He said that the Opposition party does not having the courage to make its stance clear.

Attacking Jaitley further, Singhvi asked if the BJP wanted to pass a Lokpal bill or not?

"They (BJP) are making statements of stringent conditions in the bill and are saying they want to pass a strong and comprehensive bill but after three months. They are using it (conditions) as a pretext not to pass the bill," Singhvi said.


What govt says

  • Lokpal, CBI & CVC can co-exist. A 70-year-old institution cannot cease to exist merely because a new institution is taking birth. Separation of investigation and prosecution is ideal
  • India is a union of states and not a federation of states. The Bill has been amended to provide for consent of states before Lokayuktas can be notified
  • Bill does not lay down any 'reservation' but merely states 'some or all' members of Lokpal should ideally represent the minorities and other sections
  • Not all NGOs and trusts will come under Lokpal.

Sticking points

  • CBI should be under Lokpal
  • Regional parties say it is an assault on federalism and states cannot be forced to accept Central laws
  • No minority quota in Lokpal
  • NGOs and trusts should not come under Lokpal

1 comment:
Write comments
  1. Superior job below. I really really enjoyed that which you experienced said. Keep likely due to the fact you definitely convey a different voice to this topic. Not many people today would say whatever you have said and however built it intriguing. Appropriately, at the least I'm fascinated. Can not wait to check out far more of this from you.