'UPA has a story of broken promises': BJP on Lokpal amendments

Last Updated: Thu, Jan 31, 2013 10:50 hrs

Despite the UPA Government approving key amendments to the draft of the Lokpal Bill, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday said it was not at all excited by the Congress-led government's announcement, and added that the latter has a dismal record and a story of broken promises.

"Well, I am not at all excited by this announcement that the Cabinet has approved the Lokpal Bill, because the record of the UPA II has been so dismal and, it is a story of broken promises. We all know what happened to the Monsoon Session, that when the bill was likely to be passed with certain amendments the government colluded with the chair, adjourned the house abruptly, and denied the country the Lokpal Bill. So, whether history will repeat itself or not, that we do not know," said BJP leader Balbir Punj.

"So, we are not at all excited about it. Let us also see as to what are the provisions of the bill. Only then it will be possible to say something on the issue," he added.

The new draft of the Lokpal Bill would now be put before the Parliament during the forthcoming Budget Session.

Both Houses will have to pass the Lokpal Bill for it to become law.

Social activist Anna Hazare also expressed his disappointment with the new draft of the Lokpal Bill and termed the Cabinet exercise a 'drama'.

Hazare said the Lokpal Bill in its current form is too weak to fight rampant corruption.

"As long as investigative agencies like the CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation) and the CVC (Central Vigilance Commission) are not made independent like the Election Commission, we can not eradicate corruption from the country," he told media in Patna.

UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi had earlier this week written a letter to Hazare with assurances that the Lokpal Bill will be passed in the upcoming Budget Session.

The Lokpal Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha in 2011, but it faced hurdles in the Rajya Sabha due to strong opposition from political parties, including some of the UPA constituents, on some measures.

The proposed bill envisages the setting up of a national anti-corruption watchdog to check financial mismanagement and corrupt government practices that have deeply pervaded several democratic and civic institutions of India. (ANI)

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