New Gujarat Lokayukta Bill intends to protect corrupt,says Congress

Arjun Modhwadia says bill will discourage people from lodging complaints regarding corruption in higher echelons of the administration.

Written by Express News Service | Ahmedabad | Published: April 4, 2013 5:25:09 am

State Congress president Arjun Modhwadia Wednesday alleged that the Gujarat Lokayukta Aayog Bill 2013 is intended more to protect the corrupt and discouraging people from lodging complaints regarding corruption in higher echelons of the administration.

Addressing mediapersons here on Wednesday,he said the new Bill provided that the probe report of the lokayukta would not be tabled in the state Assembly and action on it could be initiated only after clearance by the Cabinet.

Stating that the Bill was “dangerous for governance”,he said the Section 12(2) of the Bill provided that the “investigation report of the lokayukta would not be disclosed to the public or press or published in any manner whether before,during or after the investigation”.

Saying that it was the “blackest law”,the Congress leader said Section 12(8) provided that “whoever discloses to the public or to the press any information or publishes such information in contravention of the provisions of the section shall,on conviction,be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years and shall also be liable to fine of Rs 2 lakh”’.

To prove his argument that it discouraged people to file complaint against corruption,Modhwadia said Section 11(5) of the Bill provided for six month’s jail and fine of Rs 25,000 for the complainant if the allegations in the complaint could not be proved.

Keeping these provisions of the Bill,Modhwadia said it would promote corruption as no one would dare lodge complaint against corruption.

He said his party had urged the state Governor Kamla Beniwal not to grant approval to the Bill as “it is against the spirit of the Constitution”.

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