Anna reaches out to Mamata for help on Lokpal

New Delhi : Anna Hazare today appealed to Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee, to put pressure on the government to come up with a strong Lokpal bill.

Praising Mamta for her tough stand on FDI in retail trade that forced the government to put it on hold, Hazare said: “I request her to take up the issue of a strong Lokpal bill.”

“She has done a wonderful thing in case of FDI for the country. Her decision protected many small traders,” Hazare said .

“Our request to ‘behen’ Mamata is that you should put a good word forward for Lokpal so that corruption is eradicated to some extent,” Hazare said.

The anti-corruption activist objected to the cabinet nod to the Grievances Redressal Bill, 2011 and described it as a “violation of the sense of the house” and “not acceptable to activists”.

He said the prime minister urged him to end his fast at Ramlila ground in October on the plea that the Citizen’s Charter will be under the Lokpal.

“But now the government has passed a new law which is a violation of the sense of the house,” Hazare added.

“Citizens’ Charter should not be brought as a separate law. This is not right,” he said.

The bill seeks to check graft in lower levels of administration and set standards for time-bound public service and grievance redressal at all layers of the government.

The cabinet yesterday approved the Judicial Standards and Accountability Bill, the Grievances Redressal Bill and the Whistleblowers’ Bill.

Anna was here to attend the two-day core committee which will chalk out a strategy ahead of the Dec 27-Jan 5 campaign for a strong Lokpal bill.

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