New Delhi: With the Constitution Amendment
Bill on Lokpal failing in Lok Sabha, BJP demanded
resignation of the UPA government on moral grounds.
"Government should resign on moral grounds. Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh has no moral right to continue in
office," BJP leader Yashwant Sinha told reporters after the
embarassing development for the government.
He noted that the government could not muster even simple
majority of 273 votes in favour as it managed only 250 votes
on the crucial legislation.
"Rahul Gandhi`s dream has been shattered. This shows the
monumental inefficiency of this government.
"I had said during my speech that Prime Minister spoke as
if he was making his farewell speech. If any morality left is
left in them, they should quit," Sinha said.
On the attack by Leader of the House Pranab Mukherjee for
the defeat of the bill, he said he was indulging in politics.
Sinha said it was the government`s responsibility to
ensure the requisite numbers in the House and not that of the
CPI leader Gurudas Dasgupta said the government should
"look into the mirror" as it could not mobilise the required
strength for the Constitution Amendment Bill.
He said the Lokpal was no more a Lokpal "but only its
Minister of State for DoPT V Narayanasamy, who had moved
the Lokpal and Lokayukta Bill, said, "We will bring the Bill
to Rajya Sabha. We will try hard for its passage there despite
knowing that we don`t have a majority."
BJP leader Gopinath Munde also demanded that the UPA
government should quit on moral grounds as they "miserably
failed" to garner the requisite support.
Reacting to the charges, Congress spokesperson Abhishek
Manu Singhvi trained guns on the BJP for the defeat of the
bill, saying "a good idea ought not to have been rejected only
for political reasons".
"How can those who have rejected the Bill justify their
conduct in light of the need for a Lokpal withn an enhanced
status," he said.
Trinamool Congress MP Kalyan Banerjee blamed the CPI-M
and other Left parties for "colluding with the BJP" to defeat
Union Minister Kapil Sibal said the BJP has "shown its
true colour. They never wanted any law to fight corruption".
"The Opposition is a stumbling block and they will pay
for it," he said.
Sibal`s Cabinet colleague Salman Khurshid said BJP
"We have achieved in getting a Lokpal. We had promised a
Lokpal and the Lokpal Bill has been passed. A statutory
Lokpal, at least, has been established," Khurshid said.
The constitutional status the UPA government wanted to
give, could not be given, he said.
"Why don`t you ask the BJP who did not let us do so. We
had the majority and that is why the Lokpal Bill got passed."
Reacting to Congress attacks against the Opposition,
CPI-M leader Sitaram Yechury said for the UPA to have got the
Constitution Amendment Bill passed, they required support of
273 members. "But the UPA`s strength stands at 275."
"So it is clear that they could not mobilise their own
support base, with the Trinamool Congress also not backing
"Either the Congress was not really interested in this or
it miserably failed in its floor management. Blaming the
Opposition for this defeat is a flimsy excuse," Yechury said.