New Delhi: Terming the Supreme Court rap on the coal issue as "well deserved", BJP leader Arun Jaitley on Tuesday charged the government with denigrating the institution of law officers that led to this embarrassment and sought changes in the Lokpal legislation.
He asked the government to accept the suggestions made by him and his colleagues to the Select Committee looking into the Lokpal legislation that will help restore credibility of such institutions and rebuild them.
In the wake of the recent controversy relating to alleged interference of Law Minister Ashwini Kumar and officials of PMO and the Coal Ministry in preparation of status report for the apex court on the coal scam, Jaitley, who is the Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, said it has reaffirmed the often repeated charge of the government interfering in CBI`s functioning.
"The UPA government has denigrated the institution of the Law Officers. It is this failing institution that has today embarrassed the UPA government. The rap that the government received from the apex court on this issue was well deserved. The delinquent must be held accountable," Jaitley said in an article on the issue.
He said, "This is an occasion where the government must display some sense of responsibility and accept the suggestions which we made to the Select Committee on the Lokpal legislation."
He also said that the present controversy flags the issue in relation to the independence and autonomy of the offices of the Law Officers as much as it does of CBI.
"Since we live in an age where institutions are being gradually eroded, it is necessary that unless we are able to reconstruct and rebuild these institutions, there should be a panel of lawyers independent of the government which must advise and appear for CBI. These lawyers must be appointed by the Director of Prosecution with the prior approval of the Lokpal," the BJP leader said.