Lokpal will not be a constitutional body

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New Delhi:  The Lok Sabha tonight passed the historic Lokpal Bill but a major clause of the Constitutional Amendment Bill, which provided for making the Lokpal a constitutional body, has been defeated. The government could not manage a two-third majority to push the clause through. The Lokpal thus will not be a constitutional body.

"The whole purpose was to strengthen the institution of Lokpal and Lokayukta and give it constitutional stature. The House, particularly the BJP, have decided that they don't want it so and the House lacks two-third majority. It is a sad day of democracy," said Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee.

According the Lokpal a constitutional status was first mooted by Rahul Gandhi. The bill failing is an embarrassment for the government.

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