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PM in Lokpal: Will govt buckle under pressure?

Last updated on: December 13, 2011 17:04 IST

PM in Lokpal: Will govt buckle under pressure?

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The government on Tuesday came under intense pressure from political parties to include the office of the prime minister, Group C and D employees and the anti-corruption wing of the Central Bureau Investigation within the purview of the Lokpal Bill.

Ahead of the all-party meeting on the Lokpal Bill convened by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi on Wednesday, parties including the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Left and the Bahujan Samaj Party made their position clear on the issue which they said will pursue at Wednesday's meeting.

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Image: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh


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PM in Lokpal: Will govt buckle under pressure?

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The prime minister discussed the Bill with United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi and top Congress leaders and ministerial colleagues in the core group on Tuesday ahead of the meeting with UPA allies in the evening.

The government has given indications that it may not be averse to the inclusion of prime minister within the ambit of the ombudsman. It is expected to fine-tune its strategy after the discussions with allies and at the all-party meeting.


Image: Anti-graft crusader Anna Hazare


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PM in Lokpal: Will govt buckle under pressure?

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The BJP Parliamentary Party met on Tuesday under the chairmanship of L K Advani and decided to press for the inclusion of prime minister, lower bureaucracy and citizens' charter under Lokpal at the all-party meeting on Wednesday.

It also decided to move amendments in the Bill after consultation with other parties in case the government does not accept its proposals.

"The government has called an all-party meeting to discuss the nitty-gritty of the Lokpal Bill. Our members have already given a dissent note before the

Parliamentary Standing Committee on Lokpal Bill. We will press for that in Wednesday's meeting. If they don't agree, then we will try and bring amendment in the Lokpal Bill after consultation with other political parties," BJP leader S S Ahluwalia told reporters after the meeting.


Image: BJP Parliamentary Party under Advani will press for inclusion of PM under Lokpal


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PM in Lokpal: Will govt buckle under pressure?

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In Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati accused the Congress of being soft on corruption and demanded that the prime minister, CBI, Group C and D employees be brought under the ambit of Lokpal. She said her party would oppose the bill in its present form both at Wedneday's meeting and in Parliament.

Citing the Commonwealth, 2G and Adarsh Society scams, she said that Congress' "lackadaisical policy indicates that it does not want to create a strong mechanism against corruption as maximum leaders and ministers of that party would be affected".

Communist Party of India-Marxist leader Sitaram Yechury told reporters that foe the Lokpal to be strong and effective it should include the prime minister, CBI's anti-corruption wing and inclusion of lower bureaucracy within the purview of the Bill.


Image: UP CM Mayawati said her party will oppose the Lokpal Bill in its present form


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