Govt hopes allies will help clear Lokpal Bill in RS

New Delhi: Under fierce attack from the Opposition, the government on Thursday night defended the move to adjourn the Rajya Sabha sine die saying it needs time to study the nearly 200 amendments moved by the Opposition on the Lokpal Bill.

"We have to study the 187 amendments brought by Opposition parties as most are overlapping. Some amendments relate to only a part of a clause and not the entire clause, some demand removing the entire part of the Bill," Minister of State for Personnel V Narayanasamy said here.

He said after going through the amendments, the Cabinet will take a call on what to accept and what to reject and get back to Opposition parties.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal said the Lokpal and Lokayukta Bil, 2011 was "alive" and will remain on the Rajya Sabha register. "It will be cleared in the Budget session," he said. He said several of the amendments were contradictory to each other and government wanted time to go through them.

Law Minister Salman Khurshid said "excess amendments and excess talking" led to the situation in the upper house. Khurshid said 187 amendments would have "totally changed the structure of the Bill."

Reacting to allegations made by BJP that government was `running away` from the passage of the bill, Khurshid said "who is afraid and who is not, we will come to know after two months when assembly elections are over."