New Delhi: Delhi Congress today accused the ruling AAP and opposition BJP of hindering the setting up of a strong anti-graft ombudsman in the national capital by engaging in a war of words over the Janlokpal Bill issue. “AAP and BJP are fighting each other to divert the attention of the people as they do not want a strong Jan Lokpal,” Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken said at a press conference here.
Questioning the ruling party’s intent on the Lokpal issue, he further charged that “AAP has come out with a ‘Majboor’ (helpless) Lokpal’ instead of a ‘Majboot (strong) Lokpal”.
He said that Delhi Congress will bring out a white paper on the Jan Lokpal Bill tabled in the Assembly by the ruling party and hold a massive demonstration outside Vidhan Sabha on December 3, he said. Citing what he claimed were shortcomings in the Jan Lokpal Bill, Maken said that “the Bill, by vesting the power to appoint the Lokpal in the government, takes away from the very purpose of appointing an independent Lokpal”.
The Jan Lokpal proposed in the present Bill “deviates drastically” from the draft Bill tabled in Delhi Assembly in 2014, claimed Maken. “Some key clauses, which included protection for witnesses and victims, and time-1bound action on complaints of corruption, have been removed.
“The fact that the government will wield authority over the Lokpal is also evident from the fact that MLAs have been given the power to remove the Lokpal with the consent of two/thirds majority,” he added.
The AAP government yesterday presented the Jan Lokpal Bill in the Assembly, which will empower the proposed ombudsman to act against any public servant in the national capital, including those of the Centre.