`Grievance redressal mechanism to tackle graft`
New Delhi: Against the backdrop of Anna
Hazare`s call for a fresh anti-corruption campaign, the
government today unveiled plans to set up a grievance
redressal mechanism to tackle graft in the lower ranks of
"The Citizen`s Right to Grievance Redress Bill, 2011 will
be introduced in the winter session of Parliament," Minister
of State for Personnel V Narayanasamy told reporters here.
The Bill seeks to cover all the schemes and departments
of the Central Government and provide a platform to state
governments to implement a similar mechanism for their
schemes, he said.
The draft makes it compulsory for every ministry and
department to act within 15 days on complaints from the
public, failing which an appeal could be filed with a higher
authority. This authority will have to dispose of the appeal
within 30 days.
It also seeks to impose a penalty on the grievance
redressal officer if any complaint is not addressed in a
stipulated time frame.
The law will set up a mechanism similar to the Right to
Information (RTI) Act, and seek to have a "citizens` charter"
to deal with public grievances, Rural Development Minister
Jairam Ramesh said.
Ramesh had been coordinating with the Department of
Personnel and Training in finalising the draft Bill.
Under the proposed law, every public authority will have
to designate a Grievance Redress Officer (GRO) right from the
block level up to the central government.
The GRO will receive and act on grievances from the public
on services that they are entitled to under any law or
government policy, Narayanasamy said.
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