Bad Bill


Claiming that the government has ignored almost all the basic recommendations of the select committee, the Left has indicated that the passage of the Lokpal Bill in the forthcoming Budget session of Parliament may not be easy.

"The way the Union government has treated the recommendations of the Rajya Sabha Select Committee on the Lokpal Bill, it is obvious that the government is not serious [about] getting the bill passed... The draft approved by the cabinet is bound to be opposed not only inside Parliament but outside as well", the editorial in CPI weekly New Age says. The editorial argues that the delay in bill's passage will encourage those who want to use it to "sidetrack other, much more serious problems, particularly the economic crisis".


The CPI(ML) has criticised the government for hanging Afzal Guru. An editorial in ML Update states that "it was impossible to see the execution in a narrow legal framework and miss the political context and content that stare all of us in the face." It claims that the information of rejection of Guru's clemency plea was kept secret to prevent him from seeking a possible judicial stay on the grounds of the delay in the disposal of his petition.

"The Congress had earlier said the Afzal petition would be taken up after petitions from earlier dates had been disposed. Why was the queue suddenly jumped?" it asks. "The fact that it was a political decision to hang Afzal Guru on the eve of the Budget session with the 2014 Lok Sabha elections not too far away is clear to anybody... Even if the government were now to show parity in execution, the alienation of the average Kashmiri has been deepened immeasurably..." it concludes.


An editorial in CPM journal People's Democracy focuses on the politics of cultural and religious intolerance. The article compares the present situation with that in the NDA days. "High pitched communal and religious intolerance dominated the discourse at that time... Unfortunately, now history seems to have travelled in a full circle," it says.

... contd.

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