‘Centre empowered to decide Lokpal panel member’

The Centre on Wednesday told the Delhi High Court, hearing a PIL seeking removal of Anna Hazare from drafting committee of Lokpal Bill on corruption charges, that it was its "prerogative" to decide the members of the panel.

New Delhi: The Centre on Wednesday told the Delhi
High Court, hearing a PIL seeking removal of Anna Hazare from
drafting committee of Lokpal Bill on corruption charges, that
it was its "prerogative" to decide the members of the panel.

"This (to decide members of the drafting committee of
the Bill) is the sole prerogative of the government,"
Additional Solicitor General A S Chandhoik told a bench
comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justice Sanjiv
Khanna.

The court, after hearing brief arguments, reserved its
order on the maintainability of the public interest litigation
filed by NGO Anti-Corruption `Jan Shakti` on the allegation
that Hazare had indulged in financial malpractices in running
his `Hind Swaraj Trust`.

"I am not against the Bill but a corrupt person like Anna
Hazare should not be there in the drafting committee," senior
advocate KK Sharma, appearing for the petitioner NGO, said.

"This is not a statutory body and, moreover, the bill
has to be passed by Parliament. The membership of the
committee is not a post and hence, qualification or
disqualification has no relevance at this point of time," the
bench said.

PTI

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