'As an MP and social worker, I feel ashamed'
Amid a strong anti-corruption campaign led by Anna Hazare, senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Saturday said Parliament should set aside all business and pass a strong Lokpal Bill at the earliest so that questions raised over the credibility of Legislature are answered.
The Rajya Sabha member wrote a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, saying it would be "arrogance and stupidity" on part of the Legislature to ignore the tremendous public anger against corruption that is being spearheaded by Hazare and his associates.
"I am writing this letter with sadness. As a common citizen, whatever I am witnessing, it hurts. But as an MP and social worker, I feel ashamed," said the BJP Vice President and former Union Minister in his letter.
Expressing pride in Parliamentary democracy and Constitutional set-up, he said, "The web of rules and laws" should, however, not be used as a "shield" to stand in the way of a strong Lokpal.
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Image: The letter Naqvi sent to the PM
'Rights and power of Parliament should not represent stubbornness'
"Today, there is tremendous public anger over corruption and a unique situation has arisen. The credibility of Parliament and Constitution is facing testing times. It will be arrogance and stupidity to reject the voice raised by Anna Hazare and his supporters," Naqvi wrote.
Treating the anti-corruption campaign as "a bugle of 'Mahabharata', he said, it will have to be recognised and accepted.
"The rights and power of Parliament should not represent stubbornness. He said that before the spark of public anger reaches the seat of democracy, "it is my request that we should set aside all legislative work and take up Lokpal Bill.
"If need be, a special session of Parliament should be convened and a strong Lokpal be passed at the earliest so that the trust in Parliament that is shaken is restored. This should be the priority for Parliament."