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Lokpal Bill draft panel to meet in capital


New Delhi : Civil society and government members of the Lokpal Bill joint committee are to hold their third meeting here Saturday evening to draft a stringent anti-graft law.

The meeting, to be held at 4.30 p.m. in North Block, is likely to see some progress in drafting of the anti-graft bill.

The committee, which has five representatives each from the government and civil society, was formed after veteran Gandhian Anna Hazare went on fast-unto-death that lasted for five days last month.

The last meeting on May 2 saw discussions on a document presented by civil society members on the objectives of the bill.

“The civil society members and we will think about the proposals given by both sides and again hold discussions in our next meeting to be held on May 7,” union Minister Kapil Sibal, who is also a committee member, had said.

The next two meetings are scheduled for May 23 and May 30.

Civil society members on the panel include activist Arvind Kejriwal, former Supreme Court judge Santosh Hegde, Anna Hazare and former law minister Shanti Bhushan, who is the panel’s co-chairman and his son Prashant Bhushan.

From the government’s side, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee is co-chairman, while the other members are Home Minister P. Chidambaram, Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily and Minority Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid and Sibal.

The first meeting of the joint committee was held April 16 when a modified draft of the Jan Lokpal Bill, the activist’s version of the anti-graft legislation, was presented to the government.