Lokpal bill discriminates: Sushma Swaraj

August 4th, 2011 - 6:06 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party New Delhi, Aug 4 (IANS) After opposing the anti-corruption Lokpal Bill in the Lok Sabha, Bharatiya Janata Party leader Sushma Swaraj Thursday said the proposed law created a discrimination which was not present in any other legislation.

“Our criminal law is also based on equality, the CrPC (Criminal Procedure Code) and the IPC (Indian Penal Code) don’t have separate categories for people. First time a bill has come which creates a new category; (implying that the term) minister does not include the PM,” she said.

“Our basic opposition is that we want a strong Lokpal Bill, but if the prime minister is kept out of the bill, how effective it will be?” Swaraj said to reporters.

The proposed legislation’s purview does not bring under it the prime minister during his or her term in office. But once the prime minister demits office, he or she can be investigated for any wrongdoing during the term, according to the bill’s provisions.

Swaraj, leader of opposition in the Lok Sabha, said that the prime minister was kept out of the bill despite Prime Minister Manmohan Singh saying that it was okay if he was brought within the ambit of the Lokpal.

“The prime minister said on record he has no problem in being under the Lokpal. The prime minister speaks less, and when he says something, no one listens to him,” she said.

Swaraj said that her party will now raise objections in front of parliament’s standing committee.

Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office V. Narayanasamy introduced the bill in the Lok Sabha, the lower house of parliament. Sushma Swaraj strongly opposed the introduction of the bill, demanding that the prime minister should be brought within its ambit.

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