Discussion on the issues relating to the setting up of Lokpal is underway in both the houses of the Parliament.
Beginning the discussion in Lok Sabha, Leader of the House Pranab Mukherjee said that this is one of the rare occasions when the attention of the entire nation and outside is drawn to proceeding of Lok Sabha.
He initiated the discussion in Rajya Sabha after he gave the introductory speech in Lok Sabha.In his speech in both the houses, he outlined at breadth various sequence of events that occurred in the build up to the Parliamentary discussion on Lokpal bill.He told in detail what the government has done till date which enabled the Lokpal bill to be laid in the Lok Sabha this monsoon session.
Pranab Mukherjee said the bill is awaiting consensus for the past 43 years.
Initiating the debate, Mukherjee spoke about the three-key issues that Anna Hazare had raised and demanded to be discussed in the Parliament.Pranab asked Lok Sabha to consider whether jurisdiction of the Lokpal should cover all central all central government employees.
He also asked the house to consider whether Lokpal will be applicable through the institution of the Lokayukta in all states.Pranab Mukherjee wants the house to consider whether Lokpal should have power to punish those who violate ’grievance redressal mechanism’
He also talked about the working of the joint drafting committee, response to the drafting process from various political parties, the introduction of Lokpal Bill in the Parliament and subsequent sending it to the standing committee of the Parliament.
Pranab Mukherjee said that government all through has followed established procedures in introducing the Lokpal bill.
Pranab added that the country is standing at crossroads and we need to find solution to the problem within constitutional framework without violating the supremacy of the parliament. He said this is one of the rare occasions when the attention of the entire nation and outside is drawn to proceeding of Lok Sabha.
Pranab Mukherjee beginning his speech appealed to Anna Hazare to end his fast.Senior BJP leader Lal Krishna Advani said the discussion in Lok Sabha will enable a strong Lokpal. He appealed to Anna Hazare to end his fast.
Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar allocated 7 hours for the discussion. On appeal by many parliamentarians to give more time for the discussion, she said that it will extended as and when required.
The three key demands of Mr Hazare are — appointment of Lokayukta in states, bringing lower bureaucracy in the ambit of the proposed Lokpal Bill and citizens’charter in all offices to make officials work in a time-bound manner.