Will table Lokpal Bill in Winter Session: Govt

Rejecting Anna Hazare’s demand for extending the Winter Session of Parliament, the Centre on Thursday said that the Lokpal Bill will be passed in the ongoing session itself.

New Delhi: Rejecting Anna Hazare’s demand for extending the Winter Session of Parliament to pass the Lokpal Bill, the Centre on Thursday said that the anti-graft legislation will be passed in the ongoing session itself.

Acknowledging that consensus eluded the all-party meeting on Lokpal issue, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal said government was confident that it would be able to table the proposed bill in the Winter Session itself.

"I believe that it would be possible. Yesterday, there was an all-party meeting where 35 different parties participated. All had different views on the issue. To say there was broad consensus on the issue would be wrong. This has increased the work load of the government," Bansal said.

"How to compile these 35 different views and then also bringing in government views and to make amendments in the proposed bill," Bansal said, referring to the task at government`s hand.

However, "We are working hard on it and I am confident we will be present it in this session," he said. When pointed out that only one week of the Parliament session was remaining, Bansal said, "We will have to do a lot of hard work and only then it would be possible."
"Even if we do it by 20-21st I don`t think why it cannot be done. On one day it can be discussed in one house and on the other day it can be done in the second house," he said.

Bansal said that there was a range of opinions expressed at the all-party meeting held over Lokpal.

"There was no consensus at the all party meeting. Some were of the view that why were we hastening up the whole process. Our aim is how to find a consensus view from the
different views given by the parties," he said.

"Some were of the view that Group C should be brought under the Lokpal and some were opposed to the idea as it involved 35 lakh central employees. And how will one institution look after the complaints received against them," Bansal said.

"Government has started working now on the issue and its sole effort is to see how we can come up with the bill as soon as possible," he said.
Asked what if the Bill cannot be placed during this session of Parliament, Bansal said, "This question does not arise at this moment. This is too premature and I will say we
are working on it."

When asked what would be his request to Anna Hazare, he
said, "We are not talking to him, whatever he does is his
right. But being a honourable citizen of the nation he should
understand that Parliament`s job can be done by Parliament

"People`s `fatwa` is with Parliament, which includes
more than 500 members of Lok Sabha and more than 240 members
of Rajya Sabha and they have been given the responsibility
that they have to make laws. And we are doing our work,"
Bansal said.