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Govt releases Lokpal panel audio recordings

The audio tapes show sharp differences and strong arguments between Team Anna and ministers on various provisions in the proposed anti-corruption law.



New Delhi: Government on Monday released audio
tapes of Joint Drafting Committee meetings on Lokpal Bill
showing sharp differences and strong arguments between
activists belonging to Team Anna and ministers on various
provisions in the proposed anti-corruption law.

The nine tapes in CD format covering as many meetings of
the drafting committee, which was constituted after activist
Anna Hazare`s fast in April, were provided in response to an
RTI application filed by activist Subhash Agrawal.
The Joint Drafting Committee, comprising five members of
Team Anna and an equal number of Cabinet ministers, was formed
to finalise the draft of the Lokpal Bill.

Earlier, responding to an RTI query, the Department of
Personnel and Training had said that they require the nod of
Law Ministry to make public audio recordings of the close-door
meetings of the Committee.
According to a conversation, the then Water Resources
Minister Salman Khurshid asked the civil society members about
the prosecution powers to be given to the Lokpal. He asked
whether sanction for prosecution will be given by the Lokpal
Bench or investigating officers.

In response, former Karnataka Lok Ayukta Santosh Hegde
tells the committee that in cases of persons like elected
representatives, Prime Minister, Judiciary and other such
positions, Lokpal full bench will decide but investigation
will be conducted by officers of Lokpal only on the lines of
provisions of CrPC.

He said in criminal cases, PE is registered and if found
evidence, regular case is registered and prosecution sanction
is given by senior officers.

"But investigation is done only by investigating
officers," he said.

PTI

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