Jan Lokpal Bill divides AAP and Congress, threatens Delhi government

AAP sources said the ruling party is unwilling to concede ground on the decision.

New Delhi | Updated: February 5, 2014 8:19 am
The AAP hopes to table the Bill during a session that is expected to begin on February 14. The AAP hopes to table the Bill during a session that is expected to begin on February 14.

With the Congress  refusing to support the Delhi government’s controversial Jan Lokpal Bill, the stage is set for a major showdown with the ruling Aam Aadmi Party it has propped up, threatening the survival of the five-week-old minority dispensation in the national capital.

The Arvind Kejriwal government is adamant about passing the Bill at a public session of the Delhi Assembly this month. The Bill has to be approved by the Union home ministry but AAP sources said such approval is not necessary. Delhi Congress chief and MLA Arvinder Singh Lovely said Tuesday the party could not support a Bill that is not constitutional.  “Any Bill introduced in the Delhi Assembly that has financial implications needs prior approval from the Union home ministry through the lieutenant-governor, without which it cannot become law. The Congress cannot support anything that is not constitutional,” he said.

The opposition BJP is in agreement with the Congress on this. “Once cleared by the Central government, the Assembly can pass the Bill following which it is sent back to the home ministry for approval and then for assent from the lieutenant-governor,” BJP leader and former Delhi finance minister Jagdish Mukhi said.

But AAP sources said the party was undeterred. “We are the elected government of Delhi and the Delhi Assembly is the supreme law making body. We do not require any approval from anybody else for it. We are not concerned with any other party and will introduce the Bill as planned,” a senior AAP leader said.  Education Minister Manish Sisodia remained tight lipped and chose to only say that “the Congress, for 40 years, has found ways of delaying the Lokpal. This seems like another”.

AAP sources said the ruling party is unwilling to concede ground on the decision. “This is a very important issue and we will not compromise on it for anything. We have already had a run-in with the home ministry and are not afraid of another,” said another AAP leader.  The Delhi government and the Union home ministry had locked horns over the former’s demand last month that four police officers be suspended.  Congress sources said the party would challenge the passage of the Bill. “If the speaker of the house allows this Bill, the Congress is prepared to move a motion of no confidence against the speaker,” said a senior Congress leader.  The AAP hopes to table the Bill during a session that is expected to begin on February 14.

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  1. B
    BigB
    Feb 5, 2014 at 3:11 am
    Looks like AK has found a way to get out of Government, by being unconsutional. It will be funny, if the bill doesn't p, speaker is removed, but still Congress supports the Govt. AK will be stuck.
    Reply
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      Indus
      Feb 5, 2014 at 1:47 am
      At last the beginning of the end in sight!
      Reply
      1. I
        Indus
        Feb 5, 2014 at 1:47 am
        At last the beginning of the end in sight!
        Reply
        1. R
          RAJ SINGH
          Feb 12, 2014 at 4:34 pm
          congress party is not against the janlokpal bill it is the congress party that ped the lokpal bill at the centre which has been praised even by aana hazare. but congress party can not support a bill that is unconsutional and does not follow the set rules and regulation
          Reply
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            RAJ SINGH
            Feb 12, 2014 at 4:34 pm
            congress party is not against the janlokpal bill it is the congress party that ped the lokpal bill at the centre which has been praised even by aana hazare. but congress party can not support a bill that is unconsutional and does not follow the set rules and regulation
            Reply
            1. D
              Desh Bhakt
              Feb 5, 2014 at 8:07 am
              Controversial bill? It is the right bill to weed out corruption from Delhi. Of course Congress is opposing it from being ped. Won't be surprised if BJP follows their suit soon!!
              Reply
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                Achuta Bhat
                Feb 5, 2014 at 10:44 am
                Do you mean 'na gharka ,na ghatka'.
                Reply
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                  ajay
                  Feb 5, 2014 at 4:34 pm
                  The unholy nexus of Corrupt politicians, Corrupt business groups, Paid media, Judiciary, and Paid trolls of this country are working 24X7 to malign the AAP, which represents the true wishes of the people....
                  Reply
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