States should be free to decide on Lokayukta: Mamata

West Bengal chief minister accuses Congress of double standards

Making her stand clear on the issue of Lokayukta, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday said that she was not against the concept of Lokayukta, but emphasized the choice of selecting it should be left alone to the states concerned.

“I am not against Lokayukta but it should be the prerogative of the states to opt for the model they prefer. I am not speaking of West Bengal alone but I am speaking about all the states of the country” Banerjee told reporters here on Tuesday.

Expressing her grudge against Congress’s alleged double standards, the chief minister said “It was told that the Centre would take into consideration the views of the Trinamool
Congress (TMC) and make necessary ammendments but when the bill came, it was evident that the state can set up Lokayuktas only on the model determined by the Centre”.

Better way

“I can even suggest a better model than the Centre. Why should I have to follow the Central model only” she asked.  

Expressing confidence on a strong Lokpal bill, Banerjee said: “We think that the Lokpal
should be made on the basis of consensus and that the Centre should talk to all parties in this regard. All parties support the Lokpal”.

Rubbishing the reports that the TMC has entered into a deal with the Congress, she said

“Some are saying that Mamata Banerjee has entered into a deal with the Congress. To them I would like to say , I believe in transparency and there are very few who do this kind of politics like me”. Though not intended to topple the UPA government, but reiterating her stand to go against the government on issues which would affect the common people, Banerjee said “We have raised objections on some policies of the Central Government like entry of foreign direct investment in the retail sector. Again, we have said that there should be no forcible acquisition of the agricultural land and our policy on land is the best,” she added.

Meanwhile,  Nobel laureate Amartya Sen in a programme on Monday also expressed his views on the Lokpal Bill, he said: “The solution to any problem of this kind (Corruption) has to be solved in the Indian context within the structure of our rule of laws and constitution and our democratic political system.”  







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