Lokpal and Lokayukt

Lokayukta investigates cases of corruption, where substantiated, recommend action. He is a great check on corruption, brings about transparency in the system, makes administrative machinery citizen friendly. His functions largely depend upon jurisdiction vested in him and facilities provided for taking cognizance of citizens’ grievances promptly, dexterously and expeditiously through simple, informal mechanism devoid of technicalities. Corruption is internationally recognized a major problem,capable of endangering stability and security of society, threatening social, economic and political development and undermining the values of democracy and morality.

Lokayukta Composition:-
person to be elected as a Lokayukta should be one, who is or is the Chief Justice or Judge of the High Court. Or, a famous person, who has more than 25 years of expertise in topics related to anti-corruption, public administration, vigilance, finance, law and management. Maximum four members can be selected, of which 50 percent will be judicial members. But 50 percent of the members of Lokayukta will be from SC, ST, OBC, minority and women.

Special Powers of the Lokayukta

  • Lokayukta can provide instructions for initial investigation or inspection in any case.
  • It is not possible to transfer the officer without the permission of the Lokayukta.
  • The Lokayukta will receive all the powers of the civil court while doing the investigation.

Chairperson, selection committee for appointment of members

  • The committee constituted at the Governor’s level will appoint the president and members of Lokayukt. The governor can give advice to the selection committee for reconsidering the recommendation of the committee, but there will be a compulsion to accept the recommendation after reconsideration.
  • The Governor will constitute an Investigative Committee for appointment of Chairman and Members of the Lokayukta.
  • The selection committee will consider the names of recommendations of the research committee and will then give its recommendation. On this basis the governor will appoint president and members.
  • The President and every member from whom he takes over will be able to provide services for five years or till the age of 70 years.
  • Lokayukta will not be eligible for re-appointment as Chairman or as a member.
  • For five years from the date of resignation, the President and the Member shall not be eligible to contest the election of President, Vice President, MP, MLA, Municipal Body and Panchayat.

Lokayukta will be able to probe against :-

– Chief Minister or former Chief Minister, but it would be necessary to start a full judicial inquiry And consideration and approval to begin investigating at least four members.
– Minister or former minister in the state government
– Member or former member of state assembly.
– Any officer of Group A and B level in public service.
– Any officer or its equivalent officer of Group C and Group D in public service.
– Body Board, Authority, President of Autonomous Body, Member, Employee, Officer
– Any work or conduct of any person can also be examined.

Lokpal and Lokayukta:

Some Features:

 

Both Lokpal and Lokayukta are characterised by the following features:

 

(1) They, in fact, are the institutions of Indian administrative system. Their fundamental duty is to make the public administration of India free from corruption.

 

(2) These two institutions are impartial. When they are called for performing any duty they will discharge it impartially and simultaneously independently.

 

(3) The activities of the Lokpal and Lokayukta are not under any judicial review. That is—the decision or judgment of the Lokpal and Lokayukta cannot be challenged in any court of law.

 

(4) It is observed that they should not look forward for any financial or any other benefit.

 

(5) These two institutions are not subject to executive or administrative interference.

 

(6) The Lokpal and Lokayuktas are non- political persons. In other words, political personalities cannot hold the posts.

 

(7) These ranks should be of highest judiciary.

 

(8) They investigate the charges of corruption secretly.

 

(9) If Lokpal and Lokayukta want to have any information from any department the latter is bound to furnish such information.

 

There is a process of appointment. The President will appoint the Lokpal. But before that he will take advice of the Prime Minister and the leader of the Opposition. In other words, after receiving suggestion from the leader of Opposition the PM will suggest the name to the President. This process is quite judicious. The Lokpal can resign his office by addressing a letter to the President. The Lokpal is at par with the Chief Justice of India and he will have a secretariat.

Jurisdiction:

 

It is the primary duty of the Lokpal to free Indian society from corruption: And through this it will ensure justice. The government has power to order any act. But if the act of the government goes against the basic interests or rights of the individual he will move to the Lokpal for investigation and finally to take action. If the act of the government shows favouritism then the concerned persons can lodge a complaint against the authority.

 

Hence we find that the main area of action or jurisdiction is to free Indian society from corruption and along with it the nepotism and favouritism. But certain matters are excluded from the jurisdiction of Lokpal. For example, if a minister of Central Government has already taken any action or has recommended an action that matter will remain outside the purview of the Lokpal. If the Central Government decides that the issue should not be referred to the judiciary, in that case the Lokpal cannot take up the matter. If the union government already has taken action on an issue, that cannot be investigated by the Lokpal.

 

There are some acts or processes which fall under terms and conditions of a contract and if the administration takes any action in accordance with the contract the Lokpal will have no jurisdiction over that matter. Finally, the Lokpal will have no jurisdiction over matters such as appointment, removal from office, disciplinary action taken against any employee or person or superannuation etc. The jurisdiction clearly indicates that the scope of the Lokpal is limited.

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