Experts needed in the panel: Anna Hazare
Hazare says the Lokpal Bill panel needs law experts to draft a stringent anti-corruption law.
New Delhi: Anna Hazare after winning demand for the drafting of the Lokpal bill in a press conference on Sunday faced array of questions on the functioning and selection of the members for joint panel committee. Anna clarified that there is no nepotism in formation of Lokpal Bill drafting committee and also denied Baba Ramdev's allegations. "I had word with Ramdev on Sunday and there is no issue. If there is any it will be sorted out" said Hazare in the conference.
Ramdev had on Saturday alleged nepotism in the 10-member government-civil society joint drafting committee.
The yoga guru objected to the inclusion of the Shanti Bhushan and Prashant Bhushan being on the panel, himself backtracked to say he had no problem with the father-son duo.
Speaking at the press conference Hazare said "Our meeting will be transparent everyone will know what is going on in meeting."
Arvind Kejriwal, Hazare's close lieutenants, who has been supporting Anna Hazare since day one of his fast, also dismissed all allegations of nepotism in joint drafting committee and said "we want suggestion from every one, from every corner of country." Kejriwal answering the reporter also said "Anna Hazare is 100 per cent secular he oppose communalism he is only for development as you know people from all walks of life are part of our movement."
Anna Hazare said they needed experienced people and law experts on the panel to draft a stringent anti-corruption law rather then individuals. He said that people from all stratas of the Government should be invovled with the Lokpal Bill as that is the true meaning of democracy.
"We want, from top to bottom in the government, people should be involved that's the real meaning of democracy, because all the money the government has belongs to the people."
Hazare praised the way Gujarat CM Narendra Modi and Bihar CM Nitish Kumar have worked for the upliftment of the rural areas in their respective states, adding that others should emulate them.
"Whatever Gujarat and Bihar CM are doing in their states, in rural areas, every state CM should emulate it. I am not looking at a party, I am looking at the work done by them."
Anna added, "Though I praised the two CMs of Bihar and Gujarat for some work I will give 10o per cent to only those CM who adopt the Jan Lokpal bill. I don't support riots and I only support development, I will praise Narender Modi only if he adopt the Lokpal Bill."
On being about how it felt to be compared to the great Mahatama Gandhi, Hazare said, "People are comparing with Gandhi. I am not even entitled to sit at Gandhi's feet. I am a very ordinary human being. I did not know that this protest will be such so big, many people participated in it."
"This bill will reduce the corruption by 90 per cent and rest of the 10 per cent will be reduced by the right to recall elected representatives," said Anna on being asked about the success of the Jan Lokpal Bill. He is also very confident that the bill will be passed by the parliament saying, "I am very confident that this bill will come into effect and if not then I will start my protest again."
Also present at the conference was Kiran Bedi who, once again, made it clear that was no diferrence between Anna and his supporters and that they were all for the bill at the same time requesting the media to report positively and to help strengthen their on-going struggle.
Bedi also said, "When the Lokpal Bill come in effect, it will give relief to the Supreme Court, the Supreme Court will be able to do what it is suppose to do."
Hazare and his supporters ended their 98-hour long fast on Saturday, after the Goverment agreed to Hazare's demands and a Joint committee was set up. the Joint Committee consists of 10 members, out of which 5 are members of civil society. Union Law Minister Veerappa Moily will be the convener of the 10-member Joint Drafting Committee that will commence its work forthwith and evolve its own procedures to prepare the proposed legislation.
The five members of the civil society include Hazare, senior lawyers Shanti Bhushan and Prashant Bhushan, RTI activist Arvind Kejriwal and Karnataka Lokayukta Santosh Hegde. Shanti Bhushan will be the co-Chairman along with Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee.
The Government will be represented by Mukherjee, Sibal, Moily, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Water Resources Minister Salman Khurshid.
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