UPA had the numbers to ensure its draft of the Lokpal Bill sails through in Lok Sabha but in Rajya Sabha where it has failed to secure support from even its allies-Trinamool Congress , UPA is busy fighting fire and managing floor even as I write this, members of the upper house are making clear the stand of their respective parties thorough their speeches-
The latest score is looking like: BJP opposes the bill for being too weak- CBI out of purview and no breakthrough on the much sought autonomy for this institution.
Trinamool Congress has made clear that unless something is done about chapter 3 of the bill dealing with Lokayukta at the state level, it can’t really support. All in all two major issues are figuring in most speeches- Autonomy of CBI and chapter 3 as an attack on the federalism guaranteed by our constitution. Various parties in the Rajya Sabha have moved amendments totaling more than 175. Government has requested President to allow the house to function beyond midnight. Highest possibility is that the lokpal bill will go to a joint committee of both the houses while the government will anyway go ahead with voting tonight.
PS: More than 175 amendments suggest that government was in the know of demands by various parties but it went ahead with the draft anyway, may be hoping that the bill will magically get through. It is a welcome sign then no compromise has been done and democracy may reject a weak Lokpal in favour of a strong one.