Jan Lokpal needs serious debate in Parliament

Bangalore: Raising questions about Team Anna`s Jan Lokpal Bill, former union minister Sashi Tharoor today said a serious debate was needed in Parliament when the proposed legislation comes up before it.

"At the moment, in their (Team Anna) draft it looks like a supra-institution which is a law unto itself. All the powers – power to invetstigate, prosecute and punish – are vested in one person," he said on the sidelines of a function here.

Tharoor, however, appreciated Anna Hazare for creating social awakening about corruption. "I am pleased about Anna Hazare for creating social awakening about corruption, but the specific details of Jan Lokpal Bill… I am not cent per cent convinced…," he told PTI.

It has "serious dangers" that needed to be examined by the Standing Committee and Parliament, the Congress MP said adding Team Anna`s Jan Lokpal does very little to tackle small-ticket corruption faced by ordinary people on day-to-day basis. "Big-ticket corruption is not the only kind of corruption in the country. We need to do a great deal to tackle corruption at the top and the bottom levels," he added.

On Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh`s remarks that the anti-corruption stir by Hazare and yoga guru Baba Ramdev were part of an over-all plan of RSS-BJP to divert attention from Sangh`s "terror links, Tharoor said he would not accuse any body (Team Anna). "Ours is a big country and we cannot be a one-issue country. We should be able to address number of other issues.

So I am not going to accuse anybody (Team Anna) of diverting people`s attention," he said. On senior BJP leaders L K Advani`s Jan Chetana Yatra, he said it had failed to contribute to the process of investigating corruption and punishing wrongdoers. "Seizing an opportunity of a political mood and mounting on a yatra is job of a politician, but I don`t see Advani`s yatra checking corruption," Tharoor said.