More harm than good

Congress leader not attending a meeting on Lokpal will cause more delay in its appointment

GN Bureau | March 1, 2018


#Lokpal   #Congress   #Mallikarjun Kharge   #Narendra Modi  
Illustration: Ashish Asthana
Illustration: Ashish Asthana

Mallikarjun Kharge, leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha, has opted out of a meeting on the appointment of the Lokpal, a move that may end up further delaying the process for the country getting an anti-corruption watchdog.

Kharge has written to prime minister Narendra Modi stating that he will not be attending the meeting on the appointment of a Lokpal wherein he has been invited as a ‘special invitee’.

“The special invitee invitation is a concerted effort to exclude the independent voice of the opposition altogether from the selection process of the most important anti-corruption watchdog,” Kharge said in his letter, reported Indian Express.

He also questioned the government as to why the appointment has been delayed for four years.

However, not participating in the meeting will give an opportunity to the government to say that the opposition had not taken part in the process, delaying the appointment.

The Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 was passed during the term of the Congress-led UPA and it came into force on January 16, 2014. Since then there has been no headway even as the term of the NDA government is drawing to a close, with the general elections expected to take place in 2019, if not earlier.

Even the Supreme Court had taken the government to task for the delay in appointing the country’s first anti-corruption ombudsman.

On November 23, 2016, the apex court asked why the government was dragging its feet if it was “so committed to cleansing corruption.”

The Lokpal issue is currently stuck on who should be on the appointment panel.

“Don’t allow Lokpal to become a dead letter,” a bench headed by then chief justice TS Thakur told the government’s top prosecutor, reported Hindustan Times.

“When you say the government is committed to cleansing corruption, then this (Lokpal) is the step in the right direction. Why should there be a feeling government is dragging the feet?”, it added.

It looks as if the situation in Delhi is similar to the situation in Gujarat where the Lokayukta too faced hiccups.

On Sep 3, 2013, senior advocate Prashant Bhushan said the Gujarat government, then led by Narendra Modi, has been against the transparency of the position of the Lokayukta in the state, and cited the events leading to Justice RA Mehta’s resignation from the position as an example.

 “For 10 years, Modi has not allowed a Lokayukta to be appointed in Gujarat. Justice Mehta was nominated by the chief justice but he fought this tooth and nail right up to the Supreme Court, filing a review petition and then a curative petition. Eventually, Justice Mehta resigned in frustration,” Bhushan said, reported DNA.

“Now, Modi has amended the Lokayukta Act of Gujarat in a manner to make the Lokayukta totally useless. Now, the Lokayukta will be appointed essentially by the government. The Lokayukta will have no power of investigation against anybody who the government does not want him to investigate,” he added.


 

Comments

 

Other News

Uddhav Thackeray resigns as chief minister of Maharashtra

Minutes after the Supreme Court ordered a floor test on Wednesday night, Uddhav Thackeray in a televised address resigned as the chief minister of Maharashtra and also as a member of legislative council (MLC). He later drove down to Raj Bhavan and tendered his resignation to the governor Bhagat Singh Koshi

Gig workforce expected to expand to 2.35 crore by 2029-30

The gig economy has arrived in India, as the Covid-19 pandemic has propelled a flexibility of employment. As many as 77 lakh workers were engaged in the gig economy, constituting 2.6% of the non-agricultural workforce or 1.5% of the total workforce in India. The gig workforce is expected to expand to 2.35

How Antyodaya Saral is simplifying everyday life in Haryana

From obtaining an electricity connection to a driver`s licence, ration card, or old-age allowance, delivery of government schemes and services is an aspect of governance that impacts citizens at various points throughout their lives. The Haryana state government provides over 600 such schemes and services.

A blueprint of India’s economic future: From a former RBI governor

From Dependence to Self-Reliance: Mapping India’s Rise as a Global Superpower By Bimal Jalan Rupa Publications, 184 pages, Rs 695 Bimal Jalan, a former governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), has been one of our finest commentators on econom

Carbon neutrality: distant dream or a possible future?

While many countries have been chasing to reach the carbon neutral status, only a few seem to be living up to their pledges as of now. The famous ’Paris Agreement’ of 2015 was glorified and celebrated that finally 196 countries have united with an intent to mitigate and reduce the greenhouse ga

Agnipath: benefits and challenges on the path ahead

The government this week announced the Tour of Duty or `Agnipath` scheme for the recruitment of soldiers in the armed forces. Under this scheme new soldiers will be recruited only for four years. This radical and far-reaching scheme has attracted mixed reactions from various quarters. While some officials

Visionary Talk: Sanjay Pandey, Mumbai Police Commissioner with Kailashnath Adhikari, MD, Governance Now


Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter