Congress boycotts Lokpal Selection Panel meet again, fifth time this year

Congress boycotts Lokpal Selection Panel meet again, fifth time this year


New Delhi: The Congress on September 4 boycotted the Lokpal Selection Committee meeting for the fifth time this year on the ground that it will continue to do so until the leader of the single-largest Opposition party is given the status of being a full-fledged member in the panel. The five-member selection panel to choose the Lokpal, or the anti-corruption ombudsman includes the Prime Minister, Lok Sabha Speaker, Leader of the single largest opposition party in the Lok Sabha, the Chief Justice of India and an eminent jurist. Mallikarjun Kharge, leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 2 informing him of his decision to boycott the meeting of the selection committee scheduled for Tuesday on the grounds that he was being invited as a “special invitee” without any right of participation, recording an opinion or voting. “I am therefore, forced, once again to respectfully decline the invitation to attend the meeting of the Selection Committee until the leader of single largest opposition party is conferred the status of a full-fledged member as envisioned in the Lokpal Act, 2013,” Kharge said in his letter to Modi. The Congress is the single largest Opposition party in the Lower House. Kharge has boycotted the previous meetings of the committee chaired by the Prime Minister.

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