We will not support AAP on anything unconstitutional: Arvinder Singh Lovely
Delhi Congress Chief Arvinder Singh Lovely on Tuesday said if the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) did not proceed with the Jan Lokpal Bill within a legal framework and get the Bill approved by the Home Ministry, the Congress would withdraw support for its passage into law. "We wanted a good Lokayukta in Delhi, and one of the main reasons for the passing of the Lokpal Bill was Rahul Gandhi, as he was for a more transparent system," said Lovely. "Even Anna Hazare appreciated the bill, and still the Delhi Government has been constantly criticizing it," he said. "We have told them that any Jan Lokpal Bill that is formed within the political framework will be supported by the Congress, but after the kind of decision the cabinet has taken, and the sort of announcement the minister made yesterday, we are having second thoughts," he added. He further said that the Congress would not support anything that was unconstitutional. "Laws are meant to be followed, not broken. They are saying that they would directly take the bill to the Vidhan Sabha without getting it approved by the Union Home Ministry," said Lovely. "It shows that this government does not believe in following the law. I would like to ask them two questions on whether they want to make a Jan Lokpal law or, just get the bill passed," he said. "A bill whose legal formalities have not been fulfilled cannot become a law. These people who came with an idea of serving the people are using the Jan Lokpal Bill as a publicity weapon," he added. He also asked that when they already had the support of the Congress, why weren't they following legal procedures to pass the bill. "When they have a chance, and when the Congress is supporting them, why aren't they getting it passed through a legal framework," said Lovely. "Now, because they have come to power in Delhi, they are thinking if the Jan Lokpal Bill is passed, they will do as they please," he said. "If they would have followed legal procedures, they would have got our support. But, we will not support anyone for anything that is against the Constitution," he added. The Delhi Government on Monday cleared the final draft of the Jan Lokpal Bill, and the Chief Minister's office will fall under its ambit. The Jan Lokpal Bill was one of the main issues in Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party's ( AAP) manifesto. "It is a very historic day for Delhi because the state government has passed the Delhi Jan Lokpal Bill. From Delhi Chief Minister to a clerk in a government office, everyone will fall under its ambit. The important part is that there is no special privilege for CM's post, or for any other post," said state Urban Development and Education Minister Manish Sisodia. "There will be a 10-member Lokpal panel, with the investigation wing and the prosecution wing being independent from the government. The special part is 'certainty and swiftness in punishment" he added. Sisodia further said that the selection committee of the 10-member Lokpal panel would include only one member of the ruling party, viz a viz the chief minister. He also said that there is a provision of legal protection for whistle-blowers, individuals and witnesses who provide information against corrupt officials.
(Posted on 04-02-2014)