Cong seeks to widen ambit of Lokpal Bill

Cong seeks to widen ambit of Lokpal Bill

"The anti-corruption law in the US can look into the functioning of the corporate sector and the NGO (non-governmental organisations) sector and it should be considered", party General Secretary Digvijay Singh told reporters here.

However, he sidestepped questions as to whether a probe into corruption in the corporate sector and NGOs was 'the need of the hour'. Singh also said that till now he considered Hazare a Gandhian with impeccable secular credentials.

Replying to a question, he said that the National Advisory Council headed by Congress President Sonia Gandhi could also go into the Jan Lokpal Bill formulated by Hazare and his supporters. Asked whether Hazare and his supporters needed to be represented in the NAC, he merely said that "his supporters are already there".

Insisting that the issue of corruption would not end with the enactment of the Lokpal bill, he said that a comprehensive strategy needed to be evolved taking into consideration matters like the five-point plan unveiled by Gandhi at the party plenary for transparent governance.

Replying to a volley of questions on Hazare and the campaign launched by him, he said that a battle had to be fought at every level against corruption including action against bureaucrats for disproportionate assets as was taking place in Bihar and Jammu and Kashmir.

"It will be in the highest tradition of transparency if they declare," he remarked when asked whether representatives of the civil society in the Joint Committee on the Lokpal Bill should declare their assets as the Ministers on the panel have already done so. Describing Hazare as a "very fine human being who has done excellent service in the rural sector", he took a dig at the Gandhian for praising Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

"There is no Lokayukta in Gujarat for seven years. The post is vacant and he is praising Modi. Why does he not pressurise Modi over the Jan Lokpal Bill and for appointing the Lokayukta as people of Gujarat do not know where to complain", Singh remarked. Asked for his reaction over BJP veteran L K Advani's statement that Hazare's fast achieved more in four days than what the opposition had in two months when it was demanding a JPC probe into the 2G scam, Singh said it was a "sad reflection on the opposition".

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