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Parliamentary panel finalises Lokpal bill

A parliamentary standing committee examining the Lokpal bill has finalised its draft amidst growing dissent from members, including three Congress MPs. The report is likely to be tabled in parliament Friday, sources said.

The three congress members who dissented, asking for inclusion of group C employees under the Lokpal are Deepa Dasmunshi, P.T. Thomas and Meenakshi Natarajan.

Panel chairman Abhishek Singhvi said the issue of bringing the prime minister under the Lokpal has been left to parliament. He also said the many dissenting notes given by members on various issues would be reflected in the report.

Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Lalu Prasad Yadav, meanwhile, opposed giving constitutional status to the Lokpal, demanding reservation for dalits, backward castes and the minorities in all panels of the Lokpal.

However, sources said there was general agreement in the panel that the Lokpal should have constitutional status.

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