Cong appeals for patience on passage of Lokpal Bill

New Delhi: As Anna Hazare threatened to go ahead with his proposed fast, Congress today counselled patience on Lokpal Bill, saying the government would get the "very important" legislation passed in Parliament as "early as possible".

"Anna should have confidence in government. I feel this matter is unnecessary," Congress spokesman Rashid Alvi said in the wake of the social activist writing a fresh letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

In the letter, Hazare said doubts have arisen over whether the Lokpal Bill will be passed by December 23 when Parliament session gets over and threatened to go ahead with his proposed fast and `jail bharo` agitation.

Alvi said the government is trying its best to build a broad consensus on the measure not only within the UPA but also among all other parties.

Criticising the BJP which has supported Anna`s deadline, Alvi said, "Hopefully this bill will be brought in the current session, but nobody should be in a hurry. It is a very important bill, One should have patience. Government will get it passed as early as possible."

In his letter, Hazare said in the last one year, the government has given a lot of assurances on Lokpal Bill but every time they have "betrayed" the countrymen.

"Despite your promises, if a strong, independent and effective bill is not passed in the session, I will be forced to sit on a fast from December 27. `Jail bharo` agitation will start from December 30," Hazare wrote.