S. Prasannakumar, member of the State secretariat of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), said on Wednesday that although the introduction of the Lokpal Bill might not eradicate corruption completely, it might help contain corruption to a certain extent.

Addressing a press conference here, Mr. Prasannakumar said that even though there were several laws to tackle corruption, there was not a single law to regulate profits. The CPI(M) had sought details of existing laws on containing corruption under the Right to Information Act, he said.

Pointing out that talking about corruption had become a fashion, he blamed non-implementation of existing laws and absence of a rule to regulate profits for tax evasion and amassing of wealth through illegal transactions.

Mr. Prasannakumar criticised the Bharatiya Janata Party Government for what he described as hoodwinking the working class on the fixation of minimum wages. The Government had constituted a committee for the purpose, in which he was also a member. However, after the first meeting, the committee never met again and the appeals made by its members to convene another meeting had fallen on deaf ears, he said.

The fact that the rule of law did not prevail in Bellary had come to the fore yet again when the police recently prevented representatives of the CPI(M) and the Karnataka Pranta Raitha Sangha from going to the residence of Mr. Janardhan Reddy to submit a memorandum.

They wanted to draw his attention to the alleged misuse of funds under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee scheme. It appeared that the police had acted at the behest of the Minister, Mr. Prasannakumar alleged.

Mr. Prasannakumar took exception to the reported statement of Health Minister B. Sriramulu that the statues of Valmiki would be installed throughout the State and that of G. Somashekara Reddy, MLA, that a temple would be constructed to Hemareddy Mallamma. Such statements would only create a divide in society and cause confusion among people, he said.

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