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Cong won't back Jan Lokpal bill 'if norms not followed'

February 04, 2014 21:02 IST

Congress on Tuesday said it will not support the Jan Lokpal bill if it is brought by the Aam Aadmi Party government in Delhi without following "constitutional norms".

Congress' assertion on the issue came a day after AAP government made it clear that the bill will not be sent to either Ministry of Home Affairs or the Lieutenant Governor for approval before tabling in the assembly.

"Congress is not against the Jan Lokpal bill but we want the law to be passed in a constitutional manner and within the legal framework. We will approach Lt Governor over this as he is the custodian of constitution in Delhi," Senior Delhi Congress leader Haroon Yusuf told reporters.

Sources said the Law Department had mentioned in its noting that as per existing norms, Delhi government has to get clearance from either MHA or the Lt Governor before tabling any bill.

Delhi Congress chief Arvinder Singh Lovely said the party will request Lt Governor Najeeb Jung to stop AAP government from violating provisions of the Constitution.

"We will submit a memorandum to Lt Governor Najeeb Jung about the unconstitutional Jan Lokpal Bill, which has been brought to create a political drama," Lovely said adding, "Government's job is to frame laws and not break them."

Quoting the Section 44 of Transaction of Business rule of Delhi Assembly, Lovely said that Lt Governor's permission was mandatory for any bill to be tabled in Vidhan Sabha.

Alleging that the intentions of the Arvind-Kejriwal-led government behind the bill were not good, Lovely said it was not using the opportunity to serve the people.

"They promised to serve the public and make Delhi corruption free. Now when they have an opportunity to do so, they are not doing it within a legal framework. They just want to use the bill as a publicity tool," he said.

The AAP government has already decided to convene a special session of the assembly from February 13 to 16 to debate and clear the bill. It proposed to hold last day's proceedings at the Indira Gandhi Indoor stadium instead of historic Ramlila ground as announced earlier.

Blaming the Delhi chief minister of not acting in favour of the common man by misusing tax payers' money, the Congress leader said that their proposal to hold the session proceedings at Indira Gandhi indoor stadium is a wastage of taxpayer's money.

"When a specific hall has been designated for the proceedings why cant it be broadcasted live from there rather than doing it in IG stadium. Its time they focus on the basic water and electricity issues they claimed in their manifestos," he said.

Image: Congress is not against the Jan Lokpal bill but wants the law to be passed in a constitutional manner, says Haroon Yusuf


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