Team Anna divided on Lokpal Bill
By Hemanta Pande: Anti-graft crusader Anna Hazare, who fronted a nationwide campaign for the anti-corruption Lokpal Bill, has described the fresh proposed legislation of the Lokpal Bill as weak and “a betrayal to the country.”
The 75-year-old Gandhian rejected the amended Lokpal bill approved by the Union Cabinet as a “farce” and announced that he will launch another agitation if the government will go ahead with the enactment of a “weak” legislation.
Unlike Hazare, his close aide Kiran Bedi has however backed the amended Lokpal Bill draft and said the bill is much-needed accelerant in the battle against systemic corruption.
Speaking to a TV channel today, the former IPS officer said that most of the concerns have been addressed in the new draft and it is time to give up the opposition.
In her tweet late last night Bedi wrote “It will do us no harm if we begin with proposed lokpal and v keep improving it as we go along!Being very high powered it will carry weight!”
Looking at such difference between two stalwart of “Team Anna”, the further division among the anti-graft activists cannot be ruled out at all. Earlier, Arvind Kejriwal, an erstwhile key member of “Team Anna”, parted himself due to ideologue differences.
The Lokpal Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha in December 2011. But after a lack of consensus in the Rajya Sabha, the bill was referred to a committee of parliamentarians. The panel suggested 16 amendments, of which the government on Thursday has agreed to 14 of them in the anti corruption legislation.