New Delhi: Unsure as to how the open attack on the members of the Lokpal Bill drafting committee would be construed by the aam admi, the Congress, Friday, asked its ‘vocal’ party leaders to hit the pause button and refrain from critcising the panel members.
The ruling party has cautioned its leaders to follow the official line of the party on the matters related to the Lokpal Bill and desist themselves from making sarcastic comments on those nominated to the Lokpal panel.
As per the party’s diktat, from now on, only authorized spokespersons will speak on any matter related to the Lokpal Bill.
The advisory was issued in wake of report that Santosh Hegde, Karnataka Lokayukta, was mulling to quit the Lokpal panel as he was perturbed by the "vilification campaign" launched by some Congress leaders.
Santosh Hegde is upset over Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh’s comment on him that he has failed to “control corruption” in Karnataka.
Clearly, Digvijay Singh’s personal tirade against Justice Hegde has put Congress in a bad light and the party wants to send a message that it is as firm against curbing corruption as the civil society members led by Anna Hazare.
However, Digvijay Singh has now retracted from his earlier statement and said that he has spoken about Hedge in high regards and that he was only stating the fact. “All I said was that there is rampant corruption in Karnataka government and he is not able to control it,” Singh was quoted as saying
Echoing Singh’s views, Congress spokesman Manish Tewari was also quoted as saying, “He is a very eminent former judge of the Supreme Court and I do not wish to join issue with him. But I would definitely like to point out the widely held perception that Karnataka government is the mother head of corruption in the country.”
Interestingly, the party is mum on the controversy surrounding co-chairman of the panel Shanti Bhushan and his family.
First Published: Friday, April 22, 2011, 15:57