Affirming his commitment for a strong and effective Lokpal, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday said there is a “dynamic” in the legislative process which takes time. This was his first comment on the Lokpal Bill after social activist Anna Hazare went on a hunger strike for a legislation which includes suggestions of civil society.
In an apparent reference to Anna Hazare demand for passing the Jan Lokpal by this month-end, Singh said he does not want to controvert anything that was being said on it.
He said all the parties should work together to push for a “strong and effective” Lokpal and remove the “obstacles” in the way.
Observing that there was a “lot of scope for give and take”, the Prime Minister said the government was “open to discussion and dialogue” as it wants a national consensus to emerge.
“We are all in favour of a Lokpal, which is strong, which is effective,” he told a group of journalists after a full Planning Commission meeting while answering questions on the Hazare agitation.
“We are open to, I think, discussion and dialogue. We would like…a broad national consensus to emerge,” Singh underlined.
“Therefore there is a lot of scope for give and take. Our hope is that we can enlist the cooperation of all thinkingsegements of Indian public opinion to ensure that the end product is a strong and effective Lokpal which all sections of our community want,” he said.
He noted that the government had presented a Lokpal Bill in Parliament which was the demand of all political parties voiced at a conference convened by him.
“They (parties) said we cannot give you our view point unless and until you come out with a draft. We have fulfilled that obligation,” he said. Hindustan Times