Putting up a brave front after it failed to muster the numbers in the Rajya Sabha, the United Progressive Alliance government on Friday said the Lokpal Bill will “definitely” be brought before the Rajya Sabha during the budget session even as Congress leader Digvijay Singh defended the move saying extension of the House on Thursday night was not possible.
“Definitely we will bring it in March in the Budget session...we have to study the 187 amendments brought by Opposition parties as most are overlapping. Some amendments relate to only a part of a clause and not the entire clause, some demand removing the entire part of the Bill,” Minister of State for Personnel V Narayanasamy said here.
He said after going through the amendments, the government will take a call on what to accept and what to reject and get back to the Opposition parties.
Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh tweeted this morning saying “187 Amendments given till 6 pm on the day of debate and those too contradictory to each other. Extension of the House was not within powers of RS (Rajya Sabha).”
He also said, now that government has time, it must “try and bring about consensus and pass a strong implementable Lokpal Bill.”
Referring to the amendments moved by key UPA partner Trinamool Congress on the Bill in the Rajya Sabha, Mr. Narayanasamy said its reservations are regarding the appointment of Lokayuktas in the states and “they have no grievances against Lokpal.”
But at the same time the minister said Trinamool was part of the Cabinet decision to clear the Lokpal and Lokayukta Bill introduced in Lok Sabha a few days ago.
“Thy voted with us in the Lok Sabha though they had some reservations about the Constitutional amendment...we are talking to them...there is still some time and we will bring them around,” he said.