This Lokpal bill is useless, says Bhushan

August 4th, 2011 - 2:24 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 4 (IANS) The present version of the Lokpal bill is useless as it will cause confusion and discourage the common man from complaining against corruption, lawyer Prashant Bhushan said Thursday opposing its tabling in parliament.

“The present Lokpal bill is not drafted to deal with corruption at all. In fact, it will deter people who want to complain against corruption,” Bhushan told reporters. Bhushan is a member of the civil society group led by Anna Hazare and had drafted a bill which is different from the government’s version.

He said this even as the draft Lokpal bill was set to be tabled in parliament Thursday.

Bhushan said there is “too much confusion” in the jurisdiction of the Lokpal and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). Therefore, a common man would not know whom to approach if he wants to complain against any scam, he said.

“We have spoken to some political parties and are appealing to oppose the introduction of such a useless bill in parliament. Even if they cannot oppose that, they should pressurise the government to bring a fresh bill which is structurally sound,” he said.

The main contention between the government and the civil society representatives led by Hazare is the inclusion of the prime minister within the ambit of Lokpal (ombudsman).

The proposed legislation does not bring the prime minister under the purview of the Lokpal during his term in office but once he demits office, he may be investigated for any wrongdoing during his term.

It also excludes the judiciary and any action of an MP inside parliament or parliamentary committee.

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