All party meet on Lokpal Bill likely to be held next month
Posted on: 02:06 PM IST Jun 19, 2011
New Delhi: An all party meeting to seek views across the political spectrum on the issue of inclusion of the Prime Minister under the Lokpal Bill is likely to be held in the first week of July.
Government sources indicated that the meeting is expected to be convened soon after June 30 by which time the work of the Joint Committee to draft the bill will be over.
The Committee has final meetings scheduled for Monday and Tuesday.
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee is expected to have consultations with senior party leaders and ministers ahead of the Joint Committee deliberations.
The Congress core group which met over the weekend had favoured an all party meeting against the backdrop of widening differences between the government and the civil society representatives led by Anna Hazare.
The Hazare camp has been pitching for the inclusion of Prime Minister and the higher judiciary in the proposed Lokpal Bill.
Senior ministers like Chidambaram and several top party leaders have been maintaining there was divergence of views on the Prime Minister's inclusion.
Reports have it that the UPA constituents too have divergent views. They say that since the Congress is leading the coalition it has to take everyone together.
Another suggestion was that the PM could be brought in with specially carved exceptions or after he demits office.
Congress leaders have been maintaining in private that bringing the PM under the ambit of Lokpal is fraught with serious consequences and a decision in this regard needed to be taken keeping in mind a long-term view.