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SC to interpret LoP provision for Lokpal selection

Lokpal Act

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to interpret Leader of Opposition (LoP) provision for the purpose of appointment of Lokpal in which LoP is a selection committee member and asked the Centre to make its stand clear within two weeks, saying the legislation cannot be put in “cold storage”.

Emphasising the importance of the post, a bench headed by Chief Justice R. M. Lodha said Leader of Opposition conveys the voice of a representative different from government in the House.

It said LoP is a very important component (under Lokpal law) and the issue needs objective consideration in view of current political situation where at present there is no Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha.

The bench also observed that the issue of LoP is relevant not only in Lokpal law but also in other existing and incoming legislations.

It said the issue cannot be prolonged and the act cannot be put in cold storage, while posting case for final disposal for September 9.

Congress, as the second largest party in the Lok Sabha with 44 seats, has been making a strong bid for the LoP post but the ruling BJP has not acceded, saying the opposition party does not have the requisite 10 per cent seats which meant it needed 55 to stake claim.

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