Draft report on Lokpal to be ready by Mon

New Delhi: Consensus on the inclusion of Prime Minister under the ambit of Lokpal eluded a Parliamentary panel scrutinising the bill even as it prepares to circulate a draft report of the recommendations to the members in the next few days.

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel and Law and Justice scrutinising the Lokpal Bill today ended its internal deliberations with “broad consensus” on most of the issues including giving constitutional status to Lokpal. While the government wants to give constitutional status to the ombudsman, in a bid to placate the opposition especially the BJP, Team Anna`s suggestion that the same bill be used to create Lokayukta in states could also be recommended, sources said.

Government needs opposition`s support to bring a constitutional amendment to give the institution a constitutional status. Former Chief Justice of India J S Verma has told the panel that the same bill can create Lokayuktas in the states without any delay in setting up a constitutional body. While this particular issue was not discussed today, there is a consensus that Lokpal be a constitutional body and that the constitutional amendment be used to set up Lokayuktas in states, the sources said.

A draft report of the recommendations of the panel could be circulated to the members as early as Monday. LJP member Ram Vilas Paswan today threatened to stay away from Committee`s deliberations on Lokpal Bill if a provision for reservation for SC/ST, women and members of the minority community in the ombudsman`s main body is not made in the proposed legislation.