Accusing the UPA government of “running away” from voting on the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Bill, 2011 in the Rajya Sabha, the BJP on Friday demanded its resignation, and elections.

At a news conference here, Leaders of the Opposition Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley, however, ducked questions whether the party would move a no-confidence motion against the government.

“We would finalise our strategy before the budget session of Parliament scheduled for the last week of February,” they said.

The crux of their argument is that the Congress floor managers orchestrated “disturbance” to bail out the government, which faced the embarrassment of the Trinamool Congress voting against the Bill.

‘PM behind drama'

Ms. Swaraj alleged that the entire drama had the blessings of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee. Both of them, present in the House, neither spoke nor intervened to bring order, she said.

“At the stroke of midnight, when the world slept, India awoke to a great fraud being played on its parliamentary democracy. It was fleedom at midnight,” Mr. Jaitley quipped.

The two leaders asked how the government could blame the Opposition for the failure to pass the Bill when most of the Opposition parties were consistent in their stand in the Lok Sabha as well as the Rajya Sabha.

Ms. Swaraj listed three “clean” options the government could have chosen to prevent the unprecedented situation. These were referring the Bill to a select committee; extending the winter session of Parliament; or leaving the debate inconclusive and taking it up in the next session.

“The fact that the government did not exercise any of these options clearly proves that it wants to dump the Bill,” she said.

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