After Samajwadi Party, Shiv Sena to Block Jan Lokpal Bill in Parliament

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By Karuna Chandwani | December 17, 2013 4:37 PM EST

A Shiv Sena parliamentarian on Tuesday declared that his party will oppose the anti-graft Lokpal Bill when it will be tabled in Rajya Sabha.

"Our stand has always been clear, we totally oppose the Lokpal Bill. We oppose the Lokpal Bill, the ones who are running behind Lokpal are betraying the nation," Shiv Sena MP in Rajya Sabha Sanjay Raut told ANI. 

The nationalist party currently has four Rajya Sabha MPs in the Parliament who stand against the Lokpal Bill along with nine Samajwadi Party (SP) MPs.

Interestingly, Shiv Sena's long time ally - BJP - has agreed to support the Jan Lokpal Bill in the parliament. "Bill must be passed. We want to discuss and pass the Bill in the Parliament," BJP Rajya Sabha MP Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

The 250-member Upper House needs a simple majority to pass the Bill, steered by Anna Hazare. The social crusader entered the eighth day of his fast-unto-death at Ralegan Siddhi in Maharashtra.

Passing the Lokpal Bill on Tuesday is crucial for the Congress-led UPA government, who held an all-party meet to convince allies and Opposition on the matter.

Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday met with Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath on presenting the Bill.

"Rahulji has said that under all circumstances the Lokpal Bill must be passed in the Parliament today. We have urged Samajwadi Party to reconsider their decision. I hopeful they will reassess their resistance towards the Lokpal Bill and we will be able to pass it with consensus," Kamal Nath told the news agency.

Meanwhile, SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh regarding the matter, after the both the houses in the Parliament were adjourned till 12 pm due to disruptions.

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