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Jan Lokpal Final (1)

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 1 Why do we need Jan Lokpal? There are several deficiencies in our anti-corruption systems because of which despite overwhelming evidence against the corrupt, no honest investigation and prosecution takes place and the corrupt are hardly punished. The whole anti-corruption set up ends up protecting the corrupt. Our anti-corruption agencies have basic structural deficiencies because of which they are incapable of doing any honest investigations: The following four deficiencies stand out in our anti-corruption system. For details on deficiencies in our anti-corruption systems: a. Lack of Independence Most of our agencies like CBI, state vigilance departments, internal vigilance wings of various departments, Anti-corruption Branch of state police etc are not independent. In many cases, they have to report to the same people who are either themselves accused or are likely to be influenced by the accused. For instance,  The Chief Minister of Punjab is the Minister in charge of Vigilance Department of Punjab. Interestingly, the same vigilance department is also investigating charges of corruption against himself and his family and is prosecuting them. Can we expect the vigilance department to do any honest investigations or prosecution?  Please read detailed report in Annexure 2 to see how despite huge unaccounted cash being recovered from the house of a top NHAI officer, Kamal Nath denied permission to register a case of corruption against him. Coal Ministry just sat on CBI‘s repeated requests to prosecute the officer who was to become the CMD. Railways just sat on CBI‘s request to prosecute one of its top employees involved in railway recruitment scam. b. Powerless Some bodies like CVC or Lokayuktas are independent, but they do not have any powers. They have been made advisory bodies. They give two kinds of advise to the governments  to either impose departmental penalties on any officer or to prosecute him in court. Experience shows that whenever any minister or a senior officer is involved, their advice is rarely followed. c. Multiplicity of agencies Governments have deliberately created plethora of anti-corruption agencies and given them fractured mandates. This has been done to render them ineffective. For instance,  At central government level, in the same case of corruption, CVC is supposed to look into the vigilance angle of senior bureaucrats and departmental vigilance is supposed to look
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    Why do we need Jan Lokpal?There are several deficiencies in our anti-corruption systems because of which despite

    overwhelming evidence against the corrupt, no honest investigation and prosecution takes

    place and the corrupt are hardly punished. The whole anti-corruption set up ends up

    protecting the corrupt.

    Our anti-corruption agencies have basic structural deficiencies because of which they are

    incapable of doing any honest investigations:

    The following four deficiencies stand out in our anti-corruption system. For details on

    deficiencies in our anti-corruption systems:

    a. Lack of Independence

    Most of our agencies like CBI, state vigilance departments, internal vigilance wings of various

    departments, Anti-corruption Branch of state police etc are not independent. In many cases,

    they have to report to the same people who are either themselves accused or are likely to be

    influenced by the accused. For instance,

    The Chief Minister of Punjab is the Minister in charge of Vigilance Department of Punjab.Interestingly, the same vigilance department is also investigating charges of corruption

    against himself and his family and is prosecuting them. Can we expect the vigilance

    department to do any honest investigations or prosecution?

    Please read detailed report in Annexure 2 to see how despite huge unaccounted cash beingrecovered from the house of a top NHAI officer, Kamal Nath denied permission to register

    a case of corruption against him. Coal Ministry just sat on CBIs repeated requests to

    prosecute the officer who was to become the CMD. Railways just sat on CBIs request to

    prosecute one of its top employees involved in railway recruitment scam.

    b. PowerlessSome bodies like CVC or Lokayuktas are independent, but they do not have any powers. They

    have been made advisory bodies. They give two kinds of advise to the governments to either

    impose departmental penalties on any officer or to prosecute him in court. Experience shows

    that whenever any minister or a senior officer is involved, their advice is rarely followed.

    c. Multiplicity of agencies

    Governments have deliberately created plethora of anti-corruption agencies and given them

    fractured mandates. This has been done to render them ineffective. For instance,

    At central government level, in the same case of corruption, CVC is supposed to lookinto the vigilance angle of senior bureaucrats and departmental vigilance is supposed to look

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    into the role of junior bureaucrats. As if junior and senior bureaucrats indulge in

    corruption separately.

    Again in the same case, whereas these two agencies enquire into the matter from vigilanceangle, CBI investigates into the same matter from criminal angle i.e corruption angle. Now,

    the vigilance and corruption angles are almost the same. The two agencies broadly do the

    same enquiries and investigations.

    According to the Lokpal model proposed by Government of India, CVC will enquire intothe role of bureaucrats and Lokpal will look into the role of politicians, as if politicians and

    bureaucrats indulge in corruption separately.

    Firstly, this kind of fractured mandate creates confusion. Secondly, enquiries andinvestigations into any case go on and on for years. For instance, in street lighting case of

    Common Wealth Games, first an enquiry was done by CVC, then CBI investigated into the

    same case and then it was again enquired into by Shunglu committee. Thirdly, if two agencies

    arrive at conflicting conclusions on the same case, it only weakens the case against corrupt

    people. The final beneficiaries of this confusing system are the corrupt people who never get


    d. Lack of Transparency and internal accountability

    In addition, there is the problem of internal transparency and accountability of these anti-

    corruption agencies. Presently, there isnt any separate and effective mechanism to check if the

    staff of these anti-corruption agencies turns corrupt.

    That is why, despite so many agencies, corrupt people rarely go to jail. Corruption has become

    a high profit zero risk business. There is absolutely no deterrence against corruption.

    Our anti-corruption laws also have several critical deficiencies, which end up protecting the


    For instance,

    Even if a corrupt person is sent to jail, there is no provision in law to confiscate his illgotten wealth or to recover the loss caused by him to the government due to his corrupt


    Before initiating investigations or prosecution into any case, permission has to be takenfrom some officer or minister in charge of the same department. In many cases, they

    themselves are directly or indirectly involved in that case.

    Therefore, there seems to be too much protection for the corrupt people. There are many other

    deficiencies in our anti-corruption laws. The above have been mentioned only by way of


    Jan Lokpal Bill seeks to address these deficiencies in anti-corruption agencies and the law.

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    How will Lokpal provide relief to a common man against bribery?

    Today, a common man has to pay bribe to get any work done in any government department

    like making ration card or passport or getting income tax refund or old age pension etc. Jan

    Lokpal and Jan Lokayukta will provide relief to a common man against such day to day


    Each government department will have to make a Citizens Charter telling who does whatjob and in how much time. For instance, the charter will have to mention which officer will

    make ration card and in what time, which officer will make a passport and in how much

    time etc.

    If Charter is not followed, then people can complain to the Head of that department whowill be designated as the Public Grievance Officer (PGO)

    PGO will redress the complaint within 30 days maximum If PGO doesnt satisfy the complainant, then a complaint can be made to the vigilance

    officer of Jan Lokpal and Jan Lokayukta. Lokpve will have a vigilance officer in each

    district and Lokayukta will have it in each block.

    When a complaint of violation of citizens charter reaches a Vigilance Officer, it will bedeemed to have corruption angle.

    The Vigilance Officer will have to Solve the grievance in 30 days Impose penalty on the guilty officers which will be given to the Complainant as


    Start investigations of corruption against guilty officers. If a citizen is not satisfied with the action taken by Vigilance officer, he could appeal to the

    Chief Vigilance officer in Lokpal or Lokayukta.

    The officers of any department against whom financial and departmental penalties havebeen imposed may appeal against it in High Court.

    We believe that as soon as a few penalties get imposed upon the Head of any Department,he will put adequate systems in place and ensure that no grievances take place in future.

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    Is Lokpal a super cop?

    A myth is being created that the proposed Jan Lokpal will become a supercop and will

    become a threat to all democratic institutions. This is completely wrong. Let us see what

    does Jan Lokpal Bill propose to do?

    1. Against politicians (for their conduct outside parliament), judges and bureaucrats, Lokpalwill only investigate complaints of corruption and file a case in court. The courts will have

    the power to try and award punishment. Lokpal will not have powers to award


    2. However, in case of bureaucrats, the institution of Lokpal will have powers to imposedepartmental penalties including dismissing them, if after investigations by the

    investigation wing of Lokpal, the guilt of that officer is established. For Joint Secretary and

    above, a bench of members of Lokpal will impose such penalty after giving an opportunity

    of being heard to all affected parties. However, if accused are below the rank of Joint

    Secretary, the same will be heard by a bench of senior officers of Lokpal. These orders of

    Lokpal can be appealed against in respective High Courts. This system is much better than

    the existing system, in which the accused and its friends are responsible for enquiringagainst themselves and awarding punishment to themselves. Presently, the enquiries are

    conducted by officers from the same department (often enquiries are conducted by junior

    officers against their bosses), penalties are decided by some officer in the same ministry and

    appeals also lie with some officer in the same ministry. Since the accused officer belongs to

    the same department/ministry, he is able to influence their decisions as they have been his

    colleagues, friends and subordinates. Many times, the disciplinary authorities are

    themselves accomplices in corruption.

    Under existing system, the public or the complainant have no say in entire proceedings.

    Corrupt officers are let off after dishonest enquiries. Complainant cannot do anything.Under Jan Lokpal Bill, the complainant will be treated as a prime witness and case cannot

    be closed without giving an opportunity of being heard.

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    History of JanLokpal

    The first Jan Lokpal Bill was introduced by Shanti Bhushan in 1968 and passed in the

    4th LokSabha in 1969 but could not get through in the RajyaSabha. Subsequently, Lokpal bills

    were introduced in 1971, 1977, 1985, 1989, 1996, 1998, 2001, 2005 and in 2008, yet they were

    never passed. 42 years after its first introduction, the Lokpal bill is still pending in India.

    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 suchan 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 the

    administrative machinery. Following this, the Lokpal Bill was for the first time presented

    during the fourth LokSabha in 1968, and was passed there in 1969.

    However, while it was pending in the RajyaSabha, the LokSabha was dissolved, and 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 adepartmental 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. The fatal flaws in the government's Lokpal Bill. The basic idea of the

    Lok Pal is borrowed from the office of ombudsman, which has Administrative Reforms

    Committee of a Lokpal at the Centre, and Lokayukta(s) in the states.

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    Recently in Lime Light

    Issues regarding corruption in India have become more prominent in recent years. Thecountry was subject to socialist-inspired economic policies between the 1950s and the late1980s. Extensive regulation, protectionism, and public ownership led to slow growth

    The Vohra Report of 1993, submitted by the former Indian Union Home Secretary N.N. Vohra, studied the problem of thecriminalization of politics and of the nexus amongcriminals, politicians and bureaucrats in India. The report contained several observationsmade by official agencies on the criminal network which was virtually running a parallelgovernment. It also discussed criminal gangs who enjoyed the patronage of politicians of all

    political parties and the protection of government functionaries. It revealed that politicalleaders had become the leaders of gangs. They were also connected to the military. Over theyears criminals had been elected to local bodies, State Assemblies, and even the ParliamentThe Right to Information Act of 2005 has helped civilians work effectively towards tacklingcorruption. It allows Indian citizens (except those living in Jammu and Kashmir) to requestinformation, for a fixed fee of 10 (US$ 0.22), from a "public authority" (a body ofGovernment or "instrumentality of State") which is required to reply expeditiously or withinthirty days. Activists have used this to uncover graft cases against various politicians andbureaucrats, one consequence being that some of those activists have been attacked and evenkilled

    Various scandals were discovered in the period 2010-2011, including the 2G spectrumscam, Adarsh Housing Society Scam, and theCommon Wealth Games scam. These involvedvarious Ministers and also members of the Armed Forces, and they demonstrated howentrenched corruption had become in India. They led also to popular, non-political movementscampaigning to fight graft via new legislation.

    The Jan Lokpal Bill is a proposal to establish an independent body to investigate casesof corruption within a year and to ensure a speedy prosecution within two years of aninvestigation being started.

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    13 March 2011A group ofDelhi residents drove around the city dressed in similar clothing in an attempt toraise awareness of corruption issues and to gain support for the Jan Lokpal Bill.

    28 March 2011There were protest marches in various cities across the world, including some in the US. Theseincluded a 240-mile march in California that had begun on 12 March in San Diego and endedon 26 March at the statue erected in honour ofGandhi in San Francisco.

    30 March 2011KapilDev, a former captain of the Indian national cricket team, wrote a letter to the PrimeMinister, Manmohan Singh, complaining that the many investigations into scams arising fromthe recent Commonwealth Games had achieved nothing so far. He said that, "Why can't wehave an independent Lokpal to look into these scams. I consider you as the cleanest politicianin the recent history and I urge you for a Jan Lokpal Bill.

    4 April 2011Hazare announced that he would commence his "fast unto death" and that this would last untila comprehensive measure to tackle corruption was introduced. He claimed that thegovernment had excluded "civil society" from the panel set up to draft the Jan Lokpal Bill andimplied that at least one of the people who was to be on the drafting committee -SharadPawar - might be unsuitable for that role because of his large

    landholdings. KiranBedi and Swami Agnivesh voiced their support for Hazare.

    5 April 2011Hazare initiated his fast at JantarMantar in Delhi. Elsewhere, people attended a protestat Freedom Park, Bangalore.Campaigners for India Against Corruption (IAC) estimated that a petition circulated in thecity ofPune which demanded that the government enact a bill had attracted between 5000 and

    6000 signatures between 3 April and 5 April. Hazare has been involved with IAC, a groupestablished by various prominent activists with the primary purpose of achieving the legalenactment and subsequent enforcement of a strong version of the Jan Lokpal bill.

    7 April 2011Two rounds of talks failed. There was agreement regarding constituting a panel to examine theBill but the government would not accede to demands that it should be a formally constitutedpanel or that Hazare should lead it. As a consequence of this, Hazare continued his fast.Hazare and the protesters tried to keep the protests non-political. No politicians were welcomeat the site of the fast. Former HaryanaChief Minister Om PrakashChautala, former MadhyaPradesh Chief Minister Uma Bharti and pro Sonia Gandhi journalist BarkhaDuttwere forced

    by civilians to leave, after the protesters objected against their presence which they believedwas harming the integrity of their movement.

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    8 April 2011Protests spread to numerous other places, including Mumbai, Kolkata, Thiruvananthapuram,Hyderabad, Jaipur, Chennai, Patna, Bhopal, Ahmedabad, Ranchi, Pune, and the University ofJammu.The government continued to squabble with the activists stating that the bill draftingcommittee will be headed by a government appointed minister and not a civil society memberas the protesters demanded to avoid allowing the government to make the bill less powerful.

    9 April 2011After accepting all the demands of Hazare, the Government of India issued a OfficialGazette saying that the draft of lokpal would be made and presented in the coming monsoonsession ofLokSabha.

    I want to tell the government that we are not two but one.You should wipe it out of your mind that you are themasters. You are not the masters,the people are. Gram Sabha is more powerful thanLokSabha or State Assemblies

    Anna Hazare

    16 April 2011

    The first meeting regarding a draft of the Lokpal Bill was held on 16 April. The governmentagreed to audio-record all meetings of the Lokpal Bill panel and to hold public consultationsbefore a final draft is prepared Hazare demanded that the proceedings be televised live but thegovernment refused.

    June 2011Swami Ramdev begins his indefinite hunger strike at RamlilaMaidan in Delhi to bring backthe black money stashed in tax havens abroad. At midnight, police raid the ground when mostprotesters are sleeping and Ramdev is busy at a meeting with his core group. Police hadarranged buses to drop supporters at railway stations and bus stands in advance; hadammunition ready and were in battle-gear wearing vests and helmets and kept some

    ambulances on standby.

    We are really curious why the government isagainst the idea of telecasting live theproceedings of the committee. The peopleought to know the reasons why there is adifference between your and our viewpoint,

    Shanti Bhushan

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    9 June 2011Hazare describes his fight against corruption as the "Second Freedom Struggle" and set anultimatum of 15 August 2011, as the last date to pass a strong Jan Lokpal Bill threatening tootherwise intensify his anti-corruption agitation and start another fast from 16 August.

    16 June 2011The Government and the civil societysplit wide open due to differences in jointly drafting bill.Government representatives informed that if a consensus on the common bill is not reached,two drafts will be sent to the Cabinet, one drafted by the Government and the other drafted bythe civil society

    Govt ResponseHazare announced that he would commence his "fast unto death" and that this would last untila comprehensive measure to tackle corruption was introduced. He claimed that thegovernment had excluded "civil society" from the panel set up to draft the Jan Lokpal Bill andimplied that at least one of the people who was to be on the drafting committee -SharadPawar - might be unsuitable for that role because of his largelandholdings. KiranBedi and Swami Agnivesh voiced their support for Hazare.

    Referendum on Jan Lokpal

    We carried out the referendum in Sibal'sconstituency to prove a point, to show ifSibal really represents his people


    Referendum organised by India Against Corruption (IAC) in Chikkaballapur and Bangalore.About 94.3% of Chikkaballapur constituency and 79.7% of Bangalore voted to bring theprime minister of India under the ambit of the Jan Lokpal Bill. On July 19, 2011 All IndiaNovoday Organisation conducted referendum in Amravati city of Maharashtra. 1,20,000persons cast votes and 1,18,082 persons supported the Jan Lokpal Bill while 880 opposed and

    1,481 votes were found invalid. Referendum organised by Team Anna in KapilSibal'sconstituency in New Delhi over 85 % of the persons cast votes want Jan Lokpal Bill (theactivists' version and not the government's)

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    Drafting Committee

    The drafting committee was officially formed on 8 April 2011. It consists of ten members,including five from the government and five drawn from society.ChairmenThe Government of India accepted that the committee be co-chaired by a politician and anactivist, non-politician. It is reported that Pranab Mukherjee, from the political arena,and Shanti Bhushan, from civil society, will fill those roles.

    Government representation:

    Five Cabinet ministers will be a part of the Drafting Committee. They are: Pranab Mukherjee, Finance Minister, Co-Chairman; P. Chidambaram,Minister of Home Affairs; VeerappaMoily,Minister of Corporate Affairs; KapilSibal,Minister for Communications and Information Technology; and Salman Khursid,Minister of minority affairs.

    Civil society representation:

    Five leading social activists will be a part of the Drafting Committee. They are: Shanti Bhushan,Former Minister of Law and Justice, Co-Chairman; Anna Hazare,Social Activist; PrashantBhushan,Lawyer; N. SantoshHegde,Lokayukta (Karnataka); and ArvindKejriwal.

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    Who is ANNA HAZARE???

    He once contemplated suicide and even wrote a two-page essay on why he wanted to end his

    life. Anna Hazare was not driven to such a pass by circumstances. He wanted to live no morebecause he was frustrated with life and wanted an answer to the purpose of human existence.

    The story goes that one day at the New Delhi Railway Station, he chanced upon a book onSwami Vivekananda. Drawn by Vivekananda's photograph, he is quoted as saying that he readthe book and found his answer - that the motive of his life lay in service to his fellow humans.

    Today, Anna Hazare is the face of India's fight against corruption. He has taken that fight tothe corridors of power and challenged the government at the highest level. People, the commonman and well-known personalities alike, are supporting him in the hundreds swelling to thethousands.

    For Anna Hazare, it is another battle. And he has fought quite a few. Including some as asoldier for 15 years in Indian Army. He enlisted after the 1962 Indo-China war when thegovernment exhorted young men to join the Army.

    In 1978, he took voluntary retirement from the 9th Maratha Battalion and returned home toRalegaon Siddhi, a village in Maharashtra's drought-prone Ahmadnagar. He was 39 years old.

    He found farmers back home struggling for survival and their suffering would prompt him topioneer rainwater conservation that put his little hamlet on the international map as a modelvillage.

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    The villagers revere him. ThakaramRaut, a school teacher in Ralegaon Siddhi says, "Thanksto Anna's agitations, we got a school, we got electricity, we got development schemes forfarmers.''

    Anna Hazare's fight against corruption began here. He fought first against corruption that wasblocking growth in rural India. His organization - the BhrashtacharVirodhi Jan Andolan(People's movement against Corruption). His tool of protest - hunger strikes. And his primetarget - politicians.

    His weapon is potent. In 1995-96, he forced the Sena-BJP government in Maharashtra to droptwo corrupt Cabinet Ministers. In 2003, he forced the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party(NCP) state government to set up an investigation against four ministers.

    Maharashtra stalwarts like SharadPawar and Bal Thackeray have often called his style ofagitation nothing short of "blackmail".

    But Anna Hazare has soldiered on relentless. From one battle to another in his war againstcorruption. He fought from the front to have Right to Information (RTI) implemented. He isnow fighting for the implementation of the Jan Lokpal Bill, an anti-corruption bill drafted by

    leading members of civil society that envisages speedy action in corruption cases againsteveryone, including ministers and senior bureaucrats.

    More than 30 years after Anna Hazare started his crusade, as the 72-year-old observes ahunger strike in Delhi against large-scale corruption at the national level, nothing really haschanged except the scale of his battle.

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    Governments Lokpal Bill Draft

    The Act will be called Lokpal Act, 2011.It shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification in theOfficial Gazette.

    Structure of LokpalJan Lokpal Bill proposes that at the level of Central Government, an institution called Jan

    Lokpal should be set up. Likewise, in each state, Jan Lokayukta should be set up. Jan Lokpal

    will accept corruption complaints against Central government departments and Jan

    Lokayukta will accept complaints against departments of respective state government.

    Each of these bodies will have 10 members and one Chairperson.

    a. Independence of Jan Lokpal and Jan Lokayukta

    Jan Lokpal and Jan Lokayukta would be completely independent of the governments. Their

    independence would be ensured through following measures:

    (i) Administrative independence

    They will be independent agencies like Central Election Commission, Comptroller and Auditorgeneral of India and Supreme Court. Therefore, no politician or a bureaucrat will be able to

    interfere with its functioning.

    (ii) Financial independence

    Their expenses will be charged to the Consolidated Fund of India/State. They will be provided

    whatever expenses they require.

    (iii) Manpower

    They will have powers to assess their manpower requirements and employ them either from

    existing government servants (who can come on deputation basis) or directly from the market.

    b. Single anti-corruption agency

    Anti-corruption branch of CBI, CVC and departmental vigilance wings will be merged into

    Lokpal. Anti-Corruption Branch of Police, state vigilance departments would be merged into

    Jan Lokayuktas. In 1986, when Karnataka Lokayukta was created, all existing anti-corruption

    and vigilance agencies in the state were merged into Lokayukta.

    Presently, we have institutions of Lokayuktas in 18 states. They are merely advisory bodies.

    They neither have resources nor powers. They will be replaced with Jan Lokayuktas through

    Jan Lokpal Bills.

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    c. No more advisory bodiesJan Lokpal and Jan Lokayukta will not be advisory bodies. They will have powers to start

    investigation or prosecution in any case. For that, they will not need permission from any

    government agency.

    Jan Lokpal and Jan Lokayukta will also have powers to impose departmental penalties on


    What action will be taken by Lokpal against corrupt people?

    There is corruption at all levels in panchayat works, in construction of roads, in NREGA,

    mid day meals, rations, 2G spectrum, leasing of mines, Common Wealth Games etc. Jan

    Lokpal will ensure that corrupt people are punished through the following provisions.

    a. Time bound investigations

    Investigation in any case of corruption will have to be completed within one year. Jan Lokpal

    or Jan Lokayukta will have powers to employ more officers, if required, to complete

    investigations in time. After investigations, Lokpal or Lokayukta shall take two actions:

    Dismiss corrupt officers: After investigations, if adequate evidence is found, then aftergiving an opportunity of being heard, Jan Lokpal or Jan Lokayukta will have powers to

    remove a government officer from job or to impose any other departmental penalties like

    reduction in rank, stopping promotion etc. These orders could be challenged in High Court.

    Time bound trial: In addition to imposing departmental penalties, if a case is made out, JanLokpal or Jan Lokayukta will file a case in trial court. The court will have to complete the

    trial and announce punishment within next one year. If required, Jan Lokpal or Jan

    Lokayukta will have powers to direct the government to set up additional courts to

    complete the trial in time.

    b. Recovery of loss caused to government

    During investigations,if there is strong evidence against corruption, Jan Lokpal or Jan

    Lokayukta shall ban the transfer of assets of the accused or the assets of those who would have

    benefitted from the accused. At the time of conviction, the court will assess the loss caused by

    the accused to the government. This loss will be recovered from these assets and as land

    revenue. (Currently, there is no provision in our law to recover the bribes earned by corrupt

    people or the loss caused by them to the government).

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    c. Confiscation of assetsEach bureaucrat, politician and judge would be required to submit a statement of moveable

    and immoveable assets owned by him and his family on an annual basis, which will be put on

    the official website. If an asset is subsequently found to be owned by a public servant, it would

    be deemed to have been obtained through corrupt means and would be confiscated.

    Prosecution proceedings would be initiated against the accused.

    Similarly, after each election, the Jan Lokpal will verify the assets declared by each candidate.If undeclared assets are found, a case will be registered and investigations started.

    d. Increased punishment for corruption

    Presently, the maximum punishment for corruption is seven years, which is believed to be very

    less. This is proposed to be increased to life sentence.

    e. Illegally obtained benefits are deemed to be obtained through corruption

    In the current system, if anyone obtains any benefit from the government illegally, it is difficult

    to prove that he did so by paying bribes. Therefore, it has been provided in Jan Lokpal Bill

    that if a person obtains any benefit from the government in violation of a law or rules and

    regulations, that person along with concerned public servants shall be deemed to have indulged

    in corrupt practice.

    f. Power to punish if its orders are not followed

    If orders of the Jan Lokpal or Jan Lokayukta are not obeyed, it will have the powers to impose

    financial penalties and also initiate contempt proceedings against the guilty officials.

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    The Lokpal shall constitute an Investigation Wing for the purpose of conductinginvestigation of any offence alleged to have been committed by a public servant punishableunder the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988

    Provided that till such time the Investigation Wing is constituted by the Lokpal, theCentral Government shall make available such number of investigation officers and other stafffrom such of its Ministries or Departments, as may be required by the Lokpal, for carrying outinvestigation under this Act

    Investigation officer to have powers of police.No investigation shall be made by an investigation officer of the Investigation Wing below therank of a Deputy Superintendent of Police or by any other officer of equivalent rank.

    Investigation officer to inquire on direction of Lokpal

    The Lokpal may, before holding any inquiry under this Act, by an order, require theinvestigation officer of its Investigation Wing to make, or cause to be made, a preliminaryinvestigation in such manner as it may direct and submit a report to the Lokpal, within suchtime as may be specified by the Lokpal, to enable it to satisfy itself as to whether or not thematter requires to be inquired into by the Lokpal.

    The investigation officer on receipt of an order shall complete the investigation and submit hisreport within the time specified under that subsection.


    Appointment of Prosecution Director.

    The Lokpal may, by notification, constitute a prosecution wing and appoint a prosecution

    Director and such other officers and employees to assist the prosecution Director for thepurpose of prosecution of public servants in relation to any complaint by the Lokpal under thisAct.

    The prosecution Director shall, after having been so directed by the Lokpal, file a complaint

    before the Special Court, and take all necessary steps in respect of the prosecution of public

    servants in relation to any offence punishable under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.

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    The Lokpal, on receipt of a complaint, may either make preliminary inquiry or direct itsInvestigation Wing, to make a preliminary investigation to ascertain whether there exists a

    prima facie case for proceeding in the matter. Every preliminary inquiry shall ordinarily becompleted within a period of thirty days and for reasons to be recorded in writing, within afurther period of three months from the date of receipt of the complaint. Upon completion ofthe preliminary investigation, the investigating authority shall submit its report to the Lokpal.

    Before the Lokpal comes to the conclusion in the course of a preliminary inquiry and after

    submission of a report that a prima facie is made out against the public servant pursuant tosuch a preliminary inquiry, the Lokpal shall afford the public servant an opportunity to beheard consistent with principles of natural justice.

    Where the Lokpal, after receiving the report of the investigating authority pursuant to apreliminary investigation or is satisfied that no prima facie case is made out for proceedingfurther in the matter, the complaint shall be closed and the decision thereon be communicatedto the complainant and the public servant

    Every inquiry conducted by the Lokpal, upon being satisfied that a prima facie case is madeout, shall be open to the public provided that in exceptional circumstances and for reasons tobe recorded in writing by the Lokpal, such inquiry may be conducted in camera.

    In case the Lokpal proceeds to inquire into the complaint, it shall hold such inquiry asexpeditiously as possible and complete the inquiry within a period of six months from the dateof receipt of the complaint which, for reasons to be recorded in writing, may be extended by afurther period of six months.

    If the Lokpal proposes to inquire into a complaint, it may, at any stage,

    (a) pass appropriate orders for safe custody of the documents relevant to the inquiry as itdeems fit; and

    (b) forward a copy of the complaint to the public servant concerned along with all relevantmaterial relied upon and afford him an opportunity to represent his case.

    The website of the Lokpal shall, from time to time and in such manner as may be specified byregulations, display to the public, the status of number of complaints pending before it ordisposed of by it. The Lokpal may withhold the records and evidence which are likely toimpede the process of inquiry or conduct of a case by it or the Special Court. Save as otherwiseprovided, the manner and procedure of conducting an inquiry or investigation under this Act,shall be such as may be specified by regulations.

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    Action on inquiry in relation to public servants not being minsters or Members ofParliament.

    Where after the conclusion of the inquiry or investigation, the findings of the Lokpaldisclose the commission of an offence under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 by a publicservant the Lokpal may

    (a) ) file a case in the Special Court and send a copy of the report together with its findings tothe competent authority;

    (b) recommend to the competent authority the initiation of discliplinary proceedings under

    the rules of disciplinary proceedings applicable to such public servant;(c) provide a copy of the report to the public servant or his representative;

    The competent authority shall, within a period of thirty days of the receipt of recommendation

    initiate disciplinary proceedings against the delinquent public servant accused of committing

    offence under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 and forward its comments on the report,

    including the action taken or proposed to be taken thereon, to the Lokpal ordinarily within six

    months of initation of such disciplinary proceedings.

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    Assessment of loss and recovery thereof by Special Court.If any public servant is convicted of an offence under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988

    by the Special Court, notwithstanding and without prejudice to any law for the time being inforce, it may make an assessment of loss, if any, caused to the public exchequer on account ofthe actions or decisions of such public servant not taken in good faith and for which he standsconvicted, and may order recovery of such loss, if possible or quantifiable, from such publicservant so convicted:

    Provided that if the Special Court, for reasons to be recorded in writing, comes to theconclusion that the loss caused was pursuant to a conspiracy with the beneficiary orbeneficiaries of actions or decisions of the public servant so convicted, then such loss may, ifassessed and quantifiable under this section, may also be recovered from such beneficiary orbeneficiaries proportionately.


    Every public servant shall make a declaration of his assets and liabilities in the manner asprovided by or under this Act. A public servant shall, within a period of thirty days from thedate on which he makes and subscribes an oath or affirmation to enter upon his office,furnish to the competent authority the information relating to

    (a) the assets of which he, his spouse and his dependent children are, jointly or severally,owners or beneficiaries;

    (b) his liabilities and that of his spouse and his dependent children.

    Presumption as to acquisition of assets by corrupt means in certain cases.If any public servant wilfully or for reasons which are not justifiable, fails to

    (a) to declare his assets; or

    (b) gives misleading information in respect of such assets and is found to be in possessionof assets not disclosed or in respect of which misleading information was furnished,

    then such assets shall, unless otherwise proved, be presumed to belong to the public servantand shall be presumed to be assets acquired by corrupt means:

    Provided that the competent authority may condone or exempt the public servant fromfurnishing information in respect of assets not exceeding such minimum value as may beprescribed.

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    Prosecution for false complaint and payment of compensation, etc., to publicservant.

    Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, whoever makes any false and frivolous orvexatious complaint under this Act shall, on conviction, be punished with imprisonment for aterm which shall not be less than two years but which may extend to five years and with finewhich shall not be less than twentyfive thousand rupees but which may extend to two lakhrupees.

    No Court, except a Special Court, shall take cognizance of an offence. No Special Courtshall take cognizance of an offence except on a complaint made by a person against whom thefalse, frivolous or vexatious complaint was made.

    The prosecution in relation to an offence shall be conducted by the public prosecutor and allexpenses connected with such prosecution shall be borne by the Central Government.

    False complaint made by society or association of persons or trust.Where any offence has been committed by any society or association of persons or trust

    (whether registered or not), every person who, at the time the offence was committed, wasdirectly in charge of, and was responsible to, the society or association of persons or trust, for

    the conduct of the business or affairs or activities of the society or association of persons ortrust as well as such society or association of persons or trust shall be deemed to be guilty of theoffence and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly:

    Provided that nothing contained render any such person liable to any punishment providedin this Act, if he proves that the offence was committed without his knowledge or that he hadexercised all due diligence to prevent the commission of such offence.

    Where an offence under this Act has been committed by a society or association of persons ortrust (whether registered or not) and it is proved that the offence has been committed with theconsent or connivance of, or is attributable to any neglect on the part of, any director,manager, secretary or other officer of such society or association of persons or trust, such

    director, manager, secretary or other officer shall also be deemed to be guilty of that offenceand shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

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    Protection of action taken in good faith by any public servant .No suit, prosecution or other legal proceedings under this Act shall lie against any publicservant, in respect of anything which is done in good faith or intended to be done in thedischarge of his official functions or in exercise of his powers.

    Protection of action taken in good faith by others .No suit, prosecution or other legal proceedings shall lie against the Lokpal or against any

    officer, employee, agency or any person, in respect of anything which is done in good faith or

    intended to be done under this Act.

    Members, officers and employees of Lokpal to be public servants.The Chairperson, Members, officers and other employees of the Lokpal shall be deemed,

    when acting or purporting to act in pursuance of any of the provisions of this Act, to be publicservants within the meaning of section 21 of the Indian Penal Code.

    Bar of Jurisdiction.No civil court shall have jurisdiction in respect of any matter which the Lokpal is

    empowered by or under this Act to determine.

    Act to have overriding effect.

    The provisions of this Act shall have effect notwithstanding anything inconsistent therewithcontained in any enactment other than this Act or in any instrument having effect by virtue ofany enactment other than this Act.

    Power to make rules.The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, make rules to carry

    out the provisions of this Act.

    Power of Lokpal to make regulations.(1) Subject to the provisions of this Act and the rules made thereunder, the Lokpal may, by

    notification in the Official Gazette, make regulations to carry out the provisions of this Act.

    (2) In particular, and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, suchregulations may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:(a) the conditions ofservice of the secretary and other officers and staff of the Lokpal and the matters which in sofar as they relate to salaries, allowances, leave or pensions, require the approval of thePresident;

    (b) the place of sittings of benches of the Lokpal;

    (c) the manner for displaying on the website of the Lokpal, the status of all complaintspending or disposed of along with records and evidence;

    (d) the manner and procedure of conducting an inquiry or investigation;

    (e) any other matter which is required to be, or may be, specified under this Act.

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    Laying of rules and regulations.

    Every rule and regulation made under this Act shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made,before each House of Parliament, while it is in session, for a total period of thirty days whichmay be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions, and if, before the expiryof the session immediately following the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, bothHouses agree in making any modification in the rule or regulation, or both Houses agree thatthe rule or regulation should not be made, the rule or regulation shall thereafter have effect

    only in such modified form or be of no effect, as the case may be; so, however, that any suchmodification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previouslydone under that rule or regulation.

    Power to remove difficulties.If any difficulty arises in giving effect to the provisions of this Act, the Central Government

    may, by order, published in the Official Gazette, make such provisions not inconsistent withthe provisions of this Act, as may appear to be necessary for removing the difficulty:

    Provided that no such order shall be made under this section after the expiry of a period oftwo years from the commencement of this Act.Every order made under this section shall belaid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament.

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    report. For instance, if there weresuch a Lokpal today and if Lokpalmade a recommendation to the PMto prosecute A. Raja, obviously thePM will not have the politicalcourage to initiate prosecution against A.Raja. Likewise, if Lokpalmade a report against the PM or anyMP of the ruling party, will the houseever pass a resolution to prosecutethe PM or the ruling party MP?Obviously, they will never do that.

    3. The bill is legally unsound. Lokpalhas not been given police powers.Therefore Lokpal cannot register anFIR. Therefore all the enquiriesconducted by Lokpal will tantamountto preliminary enquiries. Even ifthe report of Lokpal is accepted, who

    will file the chargesheet in the court?Who will initiate prosecution? Whowill appoint the prosecution lawyer?The entire bill is silent on that.

    Lokpal would have police powers. Itwill be able to register FIR, proceedwith criminal investigations andlaunch prosecution.

    4. The bill does not say what will be therole of CBI after this bill. Can CBI andLokpal investigate the same case orCBI will lose its powers to investigatepoliticians? If the latter is true, thenthis bill is meant to completelyinsulate politicians from any

    investigations whatsoever which arepossible today through CBI.

    That part of CBI, which deals withcases of corruption, will be mergedinto Lokpal so that there is just oneeffective and independent body totake action against corruption

    5. There is a strong punishment forfrivolous complaints. If anycomplaint is found to be false andfrivolous, Lokpal will have the powerto send the complainant to jailthrough summary trial but if thecomplaint were found to be true, theLokpal will not have the power tosend the corrupt politicians to jail!

    So the bill appears to be meant tobrowbeat, threaten and discouragethose fighting against corruption.

    Deterrence has been provided againstfrivolous complaints in the form offinancial penalties against thecomplainant, however, Lokayukta isempowered to prosecute the corruptand take disciplinary action againstthem.

    6. Lokpal will have jurisdiction only onMPs, ministers and PM. It will nothave jurisdiction over officers. Theofficers and politicians do notindulge in corruption separately. Inany case of corruption, there isalways an involvement of both ofthem. So according to governmentsproposal, every case would need tobe investigated by both CVC and

    Lokpal will have jurisdiction overpoliticians, officials and judges. CVCand the entire vigilance machinery ofgovernment will be merged intoLokpal.

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    Lokpal. So now, in each case, CVC whileLokpal will look into the role ofpoliticians. Obviously the caserecords will be with one agency andthe way government functions it willnot share its records with the otheragency. It is also possible that in thesame case the two agencies arriveat completely opposite conclusions.Therefore it appears to be a sureway of killing any case.

    7. Lokpal will consist of threemembers, all of them being retired

    judges. There is no reason why thechoice should be restricted to

    judiciary. By creating so many postretirement posts for judges, thegovernment will make the retiring

    judges vulnerable to government

    influences just before retirement asis already happening in the case ofretiring bureaucrats. The retiring

    judges, in the hope of getting postretirement employment would dothe bidding of the government intheir last few years.

    Lokpal would have ten members andone Chairperson. Out of them fourneed to have legal background (theyneed not be judges). Others could befrom any background.

    8. The selection committee consists ofVice President, PM, Leaders of bothhouses, Leaders of opposition inboth houses, Law Minister and Home

    minister. Barring Vice President, allof them are politicians whosecorruption Lokpal is supposed toinvestigate. So there is a directconflict of interest. Also selectioncommittee is heavily loaded in favorof the ruling party. Effectively rulingparty will make the final selections.And obviously ruling party will never

    Selection committee consists ofmembers from judicial background,Chief Election Commissioner,Comptroller and Auditor General of

    India and international awardees(likeNobel prize winners and Magsaysayawardees of Indian origin). A detailedtransparent and participatoryselection process has been prescribed.

    9. Lokpal will not have powers toinvestigate any case against PM,

    which deals with foreign affairs,security and defence. This meansthat corruption in defence deals willbe out of any scrutiny whatsoever. Itwill become impossible toinvestigate into any Bofors in future

    There is no such bar on Lokpalspowers.

    10. Whereas a time limit of six monthsto one year has been prescribed for Lokpalto enquire, however,subsequently, there is no time limitprescribed for completion of trial.

    Investigations should be completedwithin one year. Trial should get overwithin the next one year.

    11. It does not deal with corruption ofBureaucrats. Corrupt bureaucrats

    Lokpal will have power to directdisciplinary action, including

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    continue in their job without anyactions against them.

    dismissalof a corrupt officer from job.

    12. It does not talk of investigation ofcomplaints against judges

    Lokpal will have powers to initiateinvestigations on complaints ofcorruption against judges.

    13. Speaker would decide whichcomplaints shall be enquired into byLokpal.

    Lokpal will not be able to dismiss anycomplaint from public withouthearingthe complainant.

    14. Our entire governance systemsuffers from inadequate publicgrievance redressal systems, whichforce people to pay bribes. Lokpalbill does not address this issue.

    Lokpal will have the powers to ordersredressal in a time bound manner. Itwill have powers to impose financialpenalties on guilty officers, whichwould be paid to complainant ascompensation

    15. Large number of people raising theirvoice against political corruption arebeing murdered. Lokpal does not

    have any powers to provideprotection to them.

    Lokpal will have powers to provideprotection against physical andprofessional victimization of


    16. Nothing has been provided in law torecoverill gotten wealth. A corruptperson can come out of jail andenjoy that money.

    Loss caused to the government due tocorruption will be recovered from allaccused.

    17. Under the present law, there isSmall punishment for corruption-Punishment for corruption isminimum 6 months and maximum 7years.

    Enhanced punishment - Thepunishment would be minimum 5years and maximum of lifeimprisonment

    18. Under the Governments draftLokpal Bill, Government officers arebarred from making any complaints.Honest officers working in theGovernment have maximuminformation about corruption goingon within the Government. Ratherthan encouraging them to speak upagainst corruption, the Governmentstops them from making anycomplaint under this law.

    Under the Jan Lokpal Bill, anyonecanmake a complaint. No Governmentofficer is barred from making acomplaint

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    ConclusionAnna Hazare is leading a social battle sitting on a fast unto death wef 05 Apr 2011 demandinggreater public role in the Anti Corruption Bill (Lokpal Bill). He is demanding that Lokpalmust have jurisdiction over politicians, bureaucrats and judges (thankfully they have left thedefence services!).

    Is deterrence and policing the right way? So many laws and law enforcers have not broughtthe crime rate down. Have the crimes again women really reduced after setting up of CAWCell all over the country. Have the female population increased despite criminalising the act offemale foeticide?

    A Lokpal Bill if passed may slow the rate of social decay in the short run, but in the long run ittoo must become a victim of natural process of progressive decay. There will be advocates and

    jurists who would specialize in reading the fine print of the new law and will quickly beappointed advisors by those seeking circumvention from prosecution. Lokpal Bill will need todefine the acts of corruption; once defined there will be somuch field outside the definedfield. The fine-print- reader advocates will have a new playfield! That is all that will happen!!What is the real need of our country at this hour? Must Lokpal Bill become the sole point of

    focus or should corruption be targeted? Lokpal Bill must be looked at as a therapeutic cure.What the nation needs in the long run is a prophylactic measure.

    What we are witnessing is lack of character. So, we need to build character. The problemstatement cant be simpler.

    In addition to work in this field - building character - we need concurrent work to get ourselvesa new constitution. This has become unavoidable due to a singular reason whereby constitutionpermits fragmentation of society on various accounts.

    It all started with the definition of Minorities in the constitution. OBCs were later added tothe list of SC/ST by the Mandal Commission. Seeing the benefits accruing to the so-calledminorities, the sub-groups from the majority category have been constantly seeking grant ofminority status to obtain benefits for their community. Various agitations seeking minority

    status Gurjar (Dec 2010) and Jat Agitation (Mar 2011) are telling the story. Stigma of lowcaste minority of yesterday has become a brand symbol to be flaunted! What a development!

    In 63 years we have not been able to make the stigmatic mark go faint, so we turned it round!Minority is now on the threshold of becoming majority! How long will the Supreme Court

    directive, which states that reservations cannot go beyond 50 percent, survive, is anybodysguess; all it requires is another Bill in the parliament ruled by people without character (not allof them fall within the legal definition of criminals, but they all are either lacking integr ity orlow on will).

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    Division of society, permitted by the constitution, has been exploited by the politicians to create

    their respective vote banks. The nation continues to get fragmented into smaller states and the

    society continues its own fragmentation to obtain benefits of getting into the minority.

    Caste and region based politics cannot ever find convergence with national agendas that must

    be there. When the forces are divisive where can there be any unification of a country? Must

    war, natural disasters, or cricket hype be the only three events that create an illusion of unity

    (temporarily)? Can there be no other permanent or prevailing unifying force?

    The next important aspect to be looked at is the national policy for retirement orretrenchment. It is an irony that today no one is willing to retire not the politician, nor the

    judge or the bureaucrat. Each one is trying his level best to create a post-retirement

    retrenchment by creating new institutions like Lokayukt, Lokpal, Disaster Management Cell,

    AFT etc. The national must have a clear cut age of retirement except social service for the likes

    of Mahatma Gandhi and Anna Hazare. There must be no provision of retrenchment beyond

    the retirement age.

    The country simply requires a new constitution whose basic structure must be:

    Equality for all, in all spheres, irrespective of region, religion or caste. A two-party political structure across the entire nation. A party placed in the position of

    national responsibility (not power) must have uninterrupted five year tenure to showresults. The daily uncertainty of no-confidence and the tenuous environment created bycoalition politics must be removed.

    For character development established spiritual centres, like Rama Krishna Mission,AryaSamaj, J.Krisnamurthy Foundation, Brahmakumaris and many such likeinstitutions must be given a greater role to incorporate there modules for characterbuilding into the school curriculum. Institutions like Gurukul must be revived.

    The new constitution must have a broad-based, all encompassing provision like theArmy Act 63Violation of Good Order and Military Discipline.

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