Edit/Op-Ed

Did the Congress led UPA-II outwit the Team Anna?

The way the government has dealt with Team Anna through the ‘Sense of the House’ smells of a bigger conspiracy. The impression is coming out that a strong Lokpal is not in the interest of the political leaders and they would want to stop this happen.
Afroz Alam Sahil and Kamala Kanta Dash, BeyondHeadlines

Amidst nation-wide celebrations on Team Anna’s success in compelling the government and the Parliament to enact a strong Lokpal Bill, many of us have forgot to question if the Parliament has really agreed on anything tangible that the Team Anna demanded. If the developments in post-Anna Movement are any indication then the answer to the question on success of the movement is not in the affirmative neither encouraging.

It is imperative to understand what Mr. Shakeel Ahmad mentioned in an interview to a news channel (IBN-7). Mr. Ahmad was visibly upset with the overall national impression (he thinks it is created by media!) that the Team Anna movement brought the UPA-II government to its knees. He rejected such a notion and went to say that the Congress led government has in fact not agreed to the key demands of the Anna Team rather has agreed to the less controversial ones. Mr. Ahmad is a senior Congress functionary and did not answer the anchor’s query whether he spoke on behalf of the party. But it is clear that he reflected his party’s anguish and the post-Anna depression.

Below the key demands of Anna Team and the subsequent outcome through the Government initiative in Parliament are mentioned. Judge it for yourself to reach at a conclusion.

·         Anna Team- Government must withdraw its Lokpal Bill

Result- Government did not withdraw its Lokpal Bill

·         Anna Team- Prime Minister must be under Lokpal

Result- Government did not make any promise and neither mentioned anything in the letter to Anna

·         Anna Team-Members of the Parliament must be under Lokpal

Result- Government has not committed anything on this.

·         Anna Team-Jan Lokpal Bill must not be sent to the Standing Committee

Result- Jan Lokpal Bill has been sent to Standing Committee along with four more Lokpal Bills

·         Anna Team-Jan Lokpal Bill must be passed by 30th August 2011

Result- No time limit has been set, it can be held for months and years if not decades

·         Anna Team-Government intervention must be minimum in the appointments of Lokpal(s)

Result- Government did not make any promise.

·         Anna Team-The discussion on Jan Lokpal Bill must be under 184 with voting

Result- It did not happen, discussion was done under 193 without voting.

The way the government has dealt with Team Anna through the ‘Sense of the House in the Parliament’ smells of a bigger conspiracy. The impression is coming out that a strong Lokpal is not in the interest of the political leaders and they would want to stop this happen.

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