Indian govt tables Lokpal bill in upper house


Anti-corruption activist Anna Hazare gestures during a rally at Ram Lila grounds in New Delhi on August 23, 2011. Indian activist Hazare said he was ready 'to die' for India as the government called an all-party meeting to try to break its damaging standoff with the anti-corruption campaigner. Hazare's hunger strike has captured the public imagination in India, triggering huge protests and boxing Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's graft-tainted government into a tight political corner.



After the surprise passage in the lower house of parliament of a bill to create a national ombudsman to fight corruption late Tuesday, the Indian government on Wednesday tabled the bill in the upper house, reports NDTV.

The vote on the bill will not take place until Thursday, as there have been a number of amendments proposed and a single day is not enough time for the resulting debate, the news channel said.

By introducing and passing the so-called Lokpal Bill, the Congress apparently hopes to steal the momentum from social activist Anna Hazare's anti-corruption movement.  Already, Sonia Gandhi has blamed the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party for blocking a proposed amendment to make the Lokpal a constitutional authority.