All-party meeting on Lokpal today
The UPA government is likely to tell the all-party meeting it has convened on Wednesday that it is ready to bring the prime minister under the ambit of the Lokpal Bill.delhi Updated: Aug 24, 2011 01:39 IST
The UPA government is likely to tell the all-party meeting it has convened on Wednesday that it is ready to bring the prime minister under the ambit of the Lokpal Bill.
It also intends to apprise opposition leaders about a comprehensive package of steps to combat corruption, including a new public procurement law and ways to end discretionary powers.
Above all, the government wants a consensus to emerge at least on what Prime Minister Manmohan Singh mentioned in his letter to Anna Hazare - "parliamentary supremacy and constitutional obligations in matters of legislation."
The government, caught between deteriorating health and the difficult demand of his team to introduce their Jan Lokpal Bill in Parliament, appeared to be hoping to convince the activist to adopt a middle path.
"This was the first meeting, which according to us was fruitful and we will continue talking," Khurshid said.
The problem faced by the government is that the Lokpal Bill introduced by it in the Lok Sabha earlier this month has been referred to the parliamentary standing committee.
Hazare's team is insisting that their Jan Lokpal Bill be introduced in Parliament and that the government withdraw its bill.
This was reflected in Bhushan's statement that there was no need to refer their Jan Lokpal Bill to the standing committee.
"Enough discussion and debate has taken place on this bill since the last 42 years. Wide views have been ascertained. The bill should be taken up for discussion in Parliament," he said.
Bhushan, however, made it clear that talks with the government would continue.