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The Lokpal bill, which seeks constitutional status to the ombudsman, was on Thursday introduced in the Lok Sabha, amid objections from various political parties. It provides for including minorities and other sections as members.
Here are some of the quotes:
Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee: "It is for the 545 members of the Lok Sabha to decide on the bill. It is not undue haste. There is nothing illegal."
Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj: "We are disappointed. This is unconstitutional. The Supreme Court has given dozens of rulings stating that any reservation should not be more than 50 percent. Take it back, return with a fresh pro-constitutional bill and we will pass that."
Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Lalu Prasad: "We in parliament have to decide about the bill. Don't do anything wrong fearing the agitation. Whatever right is to be done, we will do that. We want a Lokpal bill but it has to be strong. This is not a strong bill. Wrong to bring ex-parliamentarians under Lokpal."
Communist Party of India member Gurudas Dasgupta: "I appeal to the Congress party and to the government that under no circumstances the sovereignty of parliament should be surrendered. The Lokpal bill is being sought to be introduced in unusual haste. There is only one father of the nation, Mahatma Gandhi, let us not allow anybody pretend to be a single crusader against corruption. We fought against corruption."
Anna Hazare: "The new Lokpal Bill is very weak, it will not help in tackling corruption. Why is government afraid of CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation)? If CBI comes under the Lokpal, there will be queue of ministers towards jail. The government is afraid of CBI, that's why it does bring it within the ambit of Lokpal."
Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal: "It (Lokpal) is a very dangerous bill which will be controlled by the government. The removal, suspension and selection of the Lokpal will be decided by the government. We reject the Lokpal bill and demand the entire bill is taken back and redrafted in the right manner."