New Delhi: Eight times in the history of this republic, governments have tried to get the Lokpal Bill enacted. But no government - from Indira Gandhi to that of Atal Bihari Vajpayee to Manmohan Singh - could succeed in installing an all powerful ombudsman to probe graft cases against the high and the mighty in the country.
The Bill based on the concept of ombudsman in Scandinavian nations was first cleared by the forth Lok Sabha in 1968, but could not be passed by the upper house during the stipulated time resulting in the first death of the bill.
Again from 1971 to 1989, four attempts by both Congress and non-Congress governments failed to revive the proposed legislation.
The short-lived IK Gujaral government again made an un-successful attempt to enact the law, as always the political class across party lines was not convinced.
Atal Bihari Vajpayee also made two futile attempts during his tenure to enact the law.
During the NDA regime - in the last five decades - the absence of any political consensus has got the bill stuck. And one of the point of contention hotly debated has been whether to bring the PM and his office under the purview of the law.
"Views should be taken into consideration," said BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad.
"The government proposes and Parliament disposes the law," said Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari.
Even the Manmohan Singh Government has revived the bill and started consultations after coming to power in 2004, but again nothing much has come about. Perhaps the non-violent methods adopted by the civil-society now will shake the political class out of inaction and slumber.