Survey shows thumbs down to government’s Lokpal bill

Fri Aug 12 2011 17:58:57 GMT+0530 (IST) by IANS

New Delhi, Aug 12 (IANS) A majority of people surveyed by a campaigning organisation Awaz do not support the Lokpal bill tabled in parliament that excludes the prime minister, MPs, the judiciary and civil servants from the ambit of the Lokpal (ombudsman).

The survey, released Friday, was conducted in six cities – Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Hyderabad and Bangalore. A total of 1,518 people over the age of 18 were interviewed.

A total of 75 percent respondents felt that the government’s bill will not effectively tackle corruption.

Seventy-six percent indicated that they would not vote for a party that did not support an effective anti-corruption draft law and said that tackling corruption will be a motivating issue at the polls.

“The government’s Lokpal bill can be renamed as Protection of Corrupt Public Servant Bill or Promotion of Corruption Bill and will not do any good in the current scenario where corruption has pervaded from top to bottom of governance,” said Prashant Bhushan, civil society member of the Lokpal bill joint drafting committee.

“Indian voters will take to the streets to get an anti-corruption bill with teeth. The government is forging ahead with their joke-pal bill. It is time for the government to listen to the people of the country,” said Shibayan Raha, a campaigner of Avaaz.

Forty-eight percent of the people surveyd were ready to protest on the streets if the government fails to pass a strong Lokpal bill.

“Active participation of people can now make the government change its mind,” Bhushan added.

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