Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on Friday charged the main Opposition with getting into an “agreement” with other parties to oppose the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Bill, 2011, knowing well that the United Progressive Alliance did not have the numbers in the Rajya Sabha.

He, however, said that even if the Bill had been passed in the Upper House, it could not have become law because the Lok Sabha had already been adjourned sine die in the afternoon on Thursday. Hence, the Bill would have to wait till the budget session.

“The BJP choreographed the show in the Rajya Sabha itself because they had become restless and restive,” Mr. Chidambaram alleged, a view shared by Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad.

“We had not anticipated 187 amendments in the Rajya Sabha. We have never heard of it before,” Mr. Chidambaram added.

When the UPA did not have the majority in the Rajya Sabha and its allies, too, were not always on its side, wasn't it time to go back to the people to seek a fresh mandate?

To this question, Mr. Chidambaram said all political parties, including the Congress, would learn their lessons from the happenings around the Lokpal issue before the Bill came up again.

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