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Updated: August 14, 2011 13:45 IST

No change in panel membership: Hazare

Gargi Parsai
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Social activist Anna Hazare addresses the media at the Press Club of India in New Delhi on Sunday. Photo: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar
Social activist Anna Hazare addresses the media at the Press Club of India in New Delhi on Sunday. Photo: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

Let us not have differences, he tells Ramdev

Anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare on Sunday warned of another agitation if the Lokpal Bill, formulated by the newly-constituted joint committee, is stalled in Parliament. The Bill is sought to be introduced in the monsoon session.

In an interaction with journalists at the Press Club of India here, Mr. Hazare said the Bill was stalled eight times in Parliament and if it was not passed by August 15, there would be another agitation. “If this is blackmail, as some people are saying it is, then I will continue to do this blackmail till my last breath as it is for the good of the people and the nation.''

According to him, involvement of “senior Ministers'' in drafting the Bill would ensure that other Ministers and Members of Parliament fall in line when legislation comes up for discussion in Parliament. “I have full faith in our democracy and Parliament,'' he said.

Ruling out changes in the membership of the joint panel, Mr. Hazare said he had spoken to yoga guru Ramdev and explained to him that it was important to have on board those involved in framing the Jan Lokpal Bill and those who had knowledge of the law. “I told him we will find a way out but let us not have differences. Our aim is the same.''

Ramdev had objected to inclusion of father-son lawyer duo Shanti and Prashant Bhushan on the panel.

Emphasising that “total transparency'' would be the hallmark of their functioning, Mr. Hazare said that opinion of all shades would be sought through video-conferencing and internet and included in making the Bill all-inclusive and effective. The first meeting of the joint committee is slated for April 16.

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Such differences can arise during the drafting of any bill by a panel. This is normal. However, let the panel be reminded that they are answerable to the people, because people power helped to swing the outcome. Let the panel operate in democratic tradition and with full transparency. Let all the deliberations of the panel be written record placed daily or weekly on a public website. Thus, even minority dissent objections and any machinations underway will also be noticeable to the public and interested media.I also wish that the existing anti corruption laws should not be subverted, diluted or suspended by this process and its outcome. What keeps India the top dogs in corruption is not lack of laws, but lack of enforcement, and political will. Election funding, stashing of assets overseas and whistle blower protection should be priority areas. A study of the Wikileaks cables should be made mandatory for all the panelists.

from:  Kumar
Posted on: Apr 11, 2011 at 14:21 IST

Anna Hazare's fast unto death is a sign of 'Patriotic will', which rekindled the hope for change that had been extinguished by the people whom we claim are our policy makers.Anna's personality is an epitome of true chauvinism.This is a direct blunt slap on the face of those who are misusing the power and money of nation. After Africa the wind of change has been arrived in India,and we will support whole-heartedly Anna's movement for welfare and reform of Nation.

from:  Pankaj
Posted on: Apr 11, 2011 at 11:30 IST

In most occasions, your ("The Hindu") news items are partial and misleading. Actually, Ramdev did not object to son-father inclusion in the committee. Perhaps, a section of Congress-supporting corrupt media does this sort of divide-and-destroy tactics by using Ramdev's name. It is a shame, media is as corrupt as politicians in this country.

from:  subbu
Posted on: Apr 11, 2011 at 09:20 IST

The step of Anna Hazare is appreciable and we all should respect. Let us hope, Parliament would not create any obstacle for the bill, because it is for nation, and the bill once become law, will decide the future of our Nation.
Corruption has reached up to neck, and if we want to remove it, we need to have some strict laws which can take action, else, forget the development of the Nation, but just political parties would be giving lucrative speeches to attract voters.

from:  deepak mishra
Posted on: Apr 11, 2011 at 08:01 IST
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