Congress stands by 'no' to notification

However, party says that it remains amenable to some of the other demands of Hazare


Sweta Ranjan | April 8, 2011

The Congress on Friday said that while it had acceded to some of anna Hazare's demands over the drafting of the Lokpal Bill, it was not amenable to issuing a gazetted notification to the effect claiming that such action by the government will set an unhealthy precedent for future protests.

"We have said yes to a joint drafting committee for the Lokpal Bill, despite our unwillingness. The Bill will be introduced in the monsson session of Parliament once the final draft is ready and we are ready to activate the committee to that effect by May 13," Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said at a press conference here. "But it is not possible for the governmnet to pass a gazatted notification on this."

A notification will set a precedent for other protestors to demand the same in the future which will make the government's stand untenable, Singhvi said.

Clarifying the Congress party's stand on corruption, he said that the party has always taken action in the face of credible allegations of graft, whether it was a chief minister or a union minister (referring to former Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan and former telecom minister A Raja respectively).

Chavan was ousted from his position as CM after his name figured in the Adarsh scam and a probe ison against Raja oover his role in the 2G scam.

"Other national and regional parties, in contrast, have shown hypocrisy. However, we can't lose a sense of balance on the current issue. we show utmost respect to Anna Hazare and his colleagues," Singhvi stated.

On being asked that if the government agreeing to a joint committee consisting of equal number of legislators and civil society members amounted to a violation of the spirit of the constitution, Singhvi replied that the government wished to demonstrate it strong commitment to rooting out graft and also its respect for popular opinion, and hence would do all that is possible.



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