New Delhi: Replying to the eight-hour-long discussion on the Lokpal Bill, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee read a statement at the floor of Lok Sabha, dubbing the resolution on Lokpal as ‘the sense of the house’ and referred the matter to the Standing Committee of the Parliament.
The statement issued on behalf of the House in principle agreed to the three key demands made by Anna Hazare led civil society group which has been agitating for the Jan Lokpal Bill.
“The resolution says the house agrees in principle to Anna Hazare’s demand. It was a sense of the House in both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha which was reflected in thumping of desks by the members,” he said requesting Hazare to break his fast.
“Substantially honourable members participated and raised the level of the debate. The debate has assumed larger dimension,” Mukherjee said referring to the debate on Lokpal. As many as 27 members have spoken on the occasion in both the houses of the Parliament.
In a special sitting, the Parliament today passed a resolution accepting the three key demands set by Team Anna-- that the lower bureaucracy be brought under the purview of the Lokpal, Lokayuktas be appointed in the states, and that a citizen`s charter for government departments be worked out along with timelines -- which had become a bone of contention between the government and Team Anna.
“For 40 years, we could not pass Lokpal Bill, I accept lapse of our governments. It was unfortunate that we could not agree to all the demands made by Hazare. But we have agreed to the substantial points,” the Finance Minister said in the Lok Sabha.
“It is now that we have to follow the legislation making process”, he said.
“One piece of legislation, however strong and empowered it may be, cannot completely eradicate corruption. A systematic change in the system is needed. We need to work collectively together,” he added.