New Delhi: Appealing to Anna Hazare to end
his fast, the government on Wednesday said it has forwarded Jan
Lokpal Bill to Parliament`s Standing Committee for
consideration and it is up to it to take a decision.
"We have forwarded Jan Lokpal Bill to the Standing
Committee for its consideration. It is for the Committee to
decide," Minister of State for Personnel V Narayanasamy said
in the Rajya Sabha.
Winding up a short duration discussion on the issue of
corruption, he said the government has an "open mind" on the
Jan Lokpal Bill.
On the issue of inclusion of Prime Minister under the
ambit of the proposed legislation, Narayanasamy said Manmohan
Singh himself was open to the idea.
Appealing to Hazare to end his nine-day-old fast, he said
the Gandhian should help the government bring a strong and
effective Lokpal Bill.
He, however, said Parliament is supreme. "Parliament and
the rule of law should be upheld by the government," he said.
Narayanasamy said Parliament was the only forum where the
Lokpal Bill can be debated and passed.
He said Lokpal Bill alone cannot end corruption and the
government was in the process of bringing in several other
legislations to tackle the problem.
Earlier, intervening in the debate Commerce and Industries
Minister Anand Sharma said though people have fundamental
right to "dissent", they cannot be allowed to "subvert"
"Democracy should not be replaced by lynching mob," he
said, apparently referring to the agitation in front of houses
of MPs and ministers by Hazare`s supporters.
The government, he said, is aware of public anger against
corruption and is addressing the issue within constitutional
framework after following due process and procedures.
But, he said "Parliament is supreme and effort to
denigrate its prestige will not be tolerated."