Quick Links



    Now, row over videography of Lokpal panel's work

    New Delhi: There is a new controversy brewing over the Lokpal Bill. While civil society activists want the proceedings of the 10-member draft committee to be videographed, the Central Government has so far been non-committal on the issue.Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, who is the chairperson of the 10-member Lokpal Bill drafting committee, said that the Government would take a "call on the issue when the panel meets" while in Kolkata on Monday.Water Resources Minister Salman Khurshid, who is one of the Government's nominees on the Lokpal Bill drafting committee, also said that the issue of video recording of the proceeding would be decided by the committee itself."The Government is committed to the Lokpal Bill. It's not for me to say whether proceedings will be made public or not. That's for the committee to decide," said Khurshid.Khurshid was reacting to Hazare, who has demanded that proceedings of the Lokpal Bill drafting committee be videographed in the interest of transparency."The public will witness all proceedings concerning the passing of this bill. Today's technology permits us to do so. The public will be kept in the loop," Hazare had said.Hazare’s demand was supported by RTI activist Arvind Kejriwal, who is one of the members of the drafting committee and has been supporting the crusade for a stronger Lokpal."We'll try to persuade the Government to video graph the proceedings. We want video recording and not video conferencing," said Kejriwal.Hazare's four-day long fast-unto-death for a stronger anti-corruption law had forced the Government to form a committee to redraft the Lokpal Bill.The 10-member committee includes five from the civil society. The members of the civil society are Hazare, Kejriwal, senior lawyers Shanti Bhushan and Prashant Bhushan, and Karnataka Lokayukta Santosh Hegde. Shanti Bhushan will be the co-chairman along with Mukherjee.The Government will be represented by Mukherjee, Khurshid, Telecommunications Minister Kapil Sibal, Law Minister Veerappa Moily and Home Minister P Chidambaram.Following Hazare's hunger strike the Government on April 9 issued a notification setting up of the drafting committee. The Committee will commence work forthwith evolving its own procedure to prepare the proposed anti-corruption bill and shall complete its work latest by June 30.