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Lokpal Bill

Published on August 2016 | Categories: Types, Government & Politics, Bills | Downloads: 165 | Comments: 0
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lokpal Bill
After 42 years, the Jan Lokpal Bill is still pending in India. The first Lokpal Bill was passed in the 4th Lok Sabha in 1969 but could not get through in Rajya Sabha, subsequently, Lokpal bills were introduced in 1971, 1977, 1985, 1989, 1996, 1998, 2001, 2005 and in 2008, yet they were never passed and its pending.[1][2] The Lokpal Bill provides for filing complaints of corruption against the prime minister, other ministers, and MPs with the ombudsman. The Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) while recommending the constitution of Lokpal was convinced that such an institution was justified not only for removing the sense of injustice from the minds of adversely affected citizens but also necessary to instill public confidence in the efficiency of administrative machinery. Following this, the Lokpal Bill was for the first time presented during the fourth Lok Sabha in 1968, and was passed there in 1969. However, while it was pending in the Rajya Sabha, the Lok Sabha was dissolved so the bill was not passed at that time. The bill was revived in 1971, 1977, 1985, 1989, 1996, 1998, 2001, 2005 and most recently in 2008. Each time, after the bill was introduced to the house, it was referred to some committee for improvements - a joint committee of parliament, or a departmental standing committee of the Home Ministry - and before the government could take a final stand on the issue the house was dissolved. Several flaws have been cited in the recent draft of the Lokpal Bill.[3]Meanwhile the activists of India Against Corruption (IAC) have prepared a draft for the bill called Jan Lokpal Bill.[2]

History
The basic idea of the Lok Pal is borrowed from the office of ombudsman, which has played an effective role in checking corruption and wrong-doing in Scandinavian and other nations. In early 1960s, mounting corruption in public administration set the winds blowing in favour of an Ombudsman in India too. The Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) set up in 1966 recommended the constitution of a two-tier machinery - of a Lokpal at the Centre, and Lokayukta(s) in the state

Duties
Prime Minister or a House of Parliament ² to whom a Lokpal sends its report holds that the allegations of corruption made in a complaint against the Prime Minister, or a Minister or MP (present or past) have not been proved, "notwithstanding anything contained in any other law", "no prosecution shall lie on any complaint, report, information or otherwise and no court shall take cognisance of any offence on the basis of the same or substantially the same allegations." The Lokpal is empowered to give directions for deferring or suspending any ongoing police investigations in matters covered by the complaints made to it.

Criticism The Lokpal bill is intended to provide the common man with direct powers to censure his/her elected representative. However, every complainant has to pay a fees and take full responsibility for leveling charges. In case the complaint is found to be baseless, punitive action extending to two years in jail and monetary fine of up to Rs.50,000 may be imposed on the complainant. Charges of corruption in the Indian legal system are not necessarily covered only under the uii. Regarding the constitution of the Lokpal, the Chairman of the Lokpal shall be from among past or present chief justices of Supreme Court. But the other two members of the Lokpal may also be from those qualified to be judges of the Supreme Court. The loose end left here makes countless many from India¶s entire judiciary eligible for the post including those who are also senior party politicians with legal background.

Latest Development
Anna Hazare, a Gandhian rights activist, has started a fast until death to demand the passing of the bill. Since the Government has responded positively with some minor changes in his demands ,Hazare on 9 April 2011 called off his hunger strike bringing to an end his 98-hour protest after government issued a gazette notification constituting a 10-member Joint Committee of ministers and civil society activists, including him, to draft an effective Jan Lokpal Bill. The Lokpal Bill is likely to be passed by 15 August 2011.

2011 Indian anti-corruption movement
The 2011 Indian anti-corruption movement constitutes of a series of protests for the Jan Lokpal Bill (Citizen Ombudsman Bill) that sprang up across India especially after April 5, 2011. The protesters want the Government of India to draft a strong anti-graft Lokpal bill which follows the originally drafted bill and not the changes the government plans to bring in, which will make the Lokayukta just another advisory body with no actual power in the vast Indian bureaucracy. Following continuous calls in vain to the government to work effectively towards passing the bill, a renowned civil society activist and Gandhian, Anna Hazare, went on an indefinite hunger strike unto death until his demands in support of the bill were met. Anna demanded for a joint committee of civil society members and government representatives to draft a strong anti-graft bill.[1]

The protests led to the creation of an unprecedented movement that saw protests being organised in various cities and towns of India. Protests included fasts, candlelight vigils and rallies. The protests are especially one of their kind in India as they have no political affiliation and the protesters have been very hostile to any political party trying to grab the initiative to meet its own political goals from the activists. The protests to some extent have similarities in methodologies to Jayaprakash Narayan's Bihar Movement (commonly called the JP Movement) of 1974. There were also similarities to the methods and philosophies used in the 2011 Egyptian revolution and the Tunisian revolution, that have rocked the very foundations of governments in the Arab world.
[2]

First Lokpal Bill draft meeting
First Lokpal Bill draft meeting was held on 16 April 2011, Eight days after Gandhian Anna Hazare called off his fast demanding a stronger Lokpal law. The government has agreed to audio-recording of all meetings of the Lokpal Bill panel and to holding public consultations before a final draft of the anti-graft law is prepared. Next meeting will be held on 2 May 2011.
[41]

Anna Hazare insisted to telecast the live

proceedings video, but government denied stating certain "drawbacks" of doing so and so the first meeting was held recording the audio for future references.[42]

Jantar Mantar
Anna Hazare started his fast unto death from 5 April 2011 at Jantar Mantar in Delhi, to press for the demand to form a joint committee of the representatives of the Government and the civil society to draft a new bill with more stronger penal actions and more independence to the Lokpal and Lokayuktas (Ombudsmen in the states), after his demand was rejected by the Prime Minister of IndiaManmohan Singh.
[43]

Jantar Mantar in a few days was filled with supporters demanding that the government enact the

Bill as soon as possible. Some commentators called it India's Tahrir Square after the famous 2011 Egyptian revolution which centered around that Square in Cairo

Government response
Hazare's protest has led to the resignation of Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar from the Group of Ministers on corruption after Anna took potshots at him.
[49]

On 8 April, the government started seriously

considering the demands of the protesters. The government has stated that it will table the bill in the

parliament in the upcoming Monsoon session.

[50]

On 9 April, the government finally agreed to have a

50:50 distribution of the Government appointed officials and the members of the civil society

Peoples movement to root out corruption
Swami Ramdev declared at Bangalore that a people's movement to liberate the country from rampant corruption and build a strong spiritual µBharat' would be launched by him in June [59]. He declared one of the main objectives of the movement was to bring about an end to corruption and bring back black money stashed away in various financial institutions in the country and abroad.

Lokayukta
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The LokAyukta (also Lok Ayukta) is an anti-corruption ombudsman organization in the Indian states These institutions were to set up on the pattern of the institution of Ombudsman in Scandinavian countries and Parliamentary Commissioner for Investigation in New Zealand.

[1][2]

.

The Administrative Reforms Commission(ARC) headed by Morarji Desai submitted a special interim report on "Problems of Redressal of Citizen's Grievances' in 1966. In this report, the ARC recommended the setting up of two special authorities designated as 'Lokpal' and 'Lokayukta' for the redressal of citizens' grievances. The LokAyukta helps people bring corruption to the fore mainly amongst the politicians and officers in the government service. It is to be noted that the LokAyukta conducts raids. But surprisingly, it does not have
[3] binding powers to punish anyone . Owing to this, many acts of the LokAyukta have borne not enough

fruit since the raided officers manage to free themselves from the clutches of the Indian Law[4]

Indian political scandals
An Indian political scandal commonly refers to some action by a politician deemed unacceptable in law or by custom, or which is held to be morally unacceptable to the politician's peers or the electorate. In almost all Indian political scandals, the politicians are not prosecuted.

List of Indian political scandals
This is a list of Indian political scandals, real or alleged.

2010 onwards
 2G spectrum scam  Adarsh Housing Society scam  Commonwealth Games Scandal  Satyam scandal

2000 - 2009
 Ketan Parekh Scandal, Barak Missile Deal Scandal, Tehelka Scandal (2001)  Taj corridor case (2002±2003)  Telgi scandal (2003)  Nitish Katara Murder Case (2004)  Oil-for-food programme scam (Natwar Singh) (2005)  Jessica Lal case (2006)  Human Trafficking Scam involving Babubhai Katara  Cash-for-votes scandal  Madhu Koda, laundering money worth over Rs. 4000 crores  Gegong Apang, public distribution scam[1]

1990 - 1999
 Bofors Scandal (1990)  Animal Husbandry Case (1990)  Bombay Stock Exchange Manipulation & Fraud by Harshad Mehta (1992)  Hawala scandal (1993)  Bangalore - Mysore Infrastructure Corridor (1995)  Sukh Ram (1996)  Fodder Scam in Bihar (1996)

 Kerala SNC Lavalin power scandal (1997)

1900 - 1990
            Telecom scam (Sukh Ram) HDW Submarine Bitumen scam Tansi land deal JMM Bribery Scandal St Kitts case Urea scam Anantnag transport subsidy scam 1971 Nagarwala scandal Fodder scam 1975: Declaration of Emergency Churhat lottery scam

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