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Anna blames Rahul Gandhi for Cong flip-flop on Lokpal

Last updated: 02 December, 2011
Ralegan Siddhi, Dec 2 (PTI) 19:04 IST

Anna Hazare on Friday alleged that Congress might have taken a U-turn on contentious issues of lower bureaucracy and CBI in Lokpal under Rahul Gandhis instructions and claimed that the government was delaying resolution of FDI imbroglio to avoid passing Jan Lokpal Bill in the Winter Session of Parliament.

Hazare launched a scathing attack on the government accusing it of dishonouring an assurance given by Parliament and later by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh that lower bureaucracy, Citizen’s Charter and setting up Lokayuktas through a central law would be included in Lokpal.

“I think there is no coordination in this government. Standing Committee took a decision (on inclusion of Group C employees in Lokpal). I think it is Rahul Gandhi who has instructed them not to include Group C and D employees under Lokpal. If you don’t include this, public will teach you a lesson,” he told reporters.

“Maybe Rahul Gandhi told (the Congress members on the panel) on phone not to bring these two or three issues,” he said, adding “this is my guess. You know that when there is smoke there is fire. The fire is not necessarily visible.”

Describing the move as a “betrayal to the entire country,” Hazare said, “On one hand the Prime Minister says corruption is to be curbed but on other, you say Group C and D staff will not be brought under the Lokpal ambit. For incorporating these provisions, you do not need to spend any extra money or have additional personnel,” he said.

“We have been saying from the beginning that Lokpal should be an autonomous institution. Today CBI is under government control. We are saying that there should be autonomy, that the government should not have control (over CBI),” Hazare said.

On Gandhi’s demand for conferring Constitutional status to Lokpal, Hazare said he was not against the idea but warned against government interference.

Hazare’s comments came a day after Parliamentary Standing Committee on Lokpal decided against the inclusion of Group C employees under the ombudsman and to have a new set up to select CBI Director as against its earlier decision.

Asked why the government was not resolving the FDI imbroglio to ensure smooth functioning of Parliament, Hazare said he suspected that they were doing this as they do not want the Jan Lokpal Bill be passed.

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