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Maharashtra CM Chavan backs Hazare's view on having strong Lokayukta

Mumbai , Thu, 26 Apr 2012 ANI

Mumbai, Apr 26 (ANI): Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Thursday backed veteran social activist Anna Hazare's view on the need to have a strong Lokayukta to combat corruption.

Hazare met Chavan earlier in the day and gave his version of draft of the Lokayukta Bill.

Chavan after his meeting with Hazare said that his government broadly agrees with the social activist that the existing provincial Lokayukta law is toothless and there is a need for strong anti-graft law to combat corruption.

"The point is that Maharashtra Lokayukta is toothless, its recommendations are only recommendatory not obligatory. So, he wants a stronger Lokayukta and we broadly agree with him that, yes, we should have a strong anti-corruption law, Lokayukta being one of them," Chavan said.

"In our discussion today, he requested about a stronger Lokayukta law to be implemented in Maharashtra. He also gave a draft of his version of the Jan Lokayukta law," he added.

The Maharashtra government headed by Chavan has been broiling under revelations of numerous corruption scams and is very keen to table a strong and effective bill that could combat this menace of corruption.

"The earlier draft has been compared, we have compared his draft, we have compared the Uttarakhand, we have also looked at the Karnataka draft and the existing Maharashtra Lokayukta act. Comparative studies are all done and now we will examine the draft given by Anna Hazare today," he said.

Chavan further said Hazare would take up the issue of drought during the second round of his campaign.

"Anna Hazare gave information about his second leg of his campaign. He will go in all the districts and later visit all the states. He is doing his work of awakening the masses and he would also be taking up the matter of drought in the districts he will visit," said Chavan.

"However, our role is very clear and I had written a letter to the Central Government to pass the provincial ombudsman bill along with the ombudsman bill," he added.

Hazare, who began his round of meetings with politicians on Wednesday, believes that the drafts for an ombudsman prepared by different groups must be discussed upon before forming a final draft.

Team Anna has so far been at loggerheads with the ruling Congress Party over the passage of an effective Lokpal Bill. (ANI)

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