Centre set to form GoM to check corruption

Last Updated: Thursday, January 6, 2011 - 22:02

New Delhi: Under attack over various scams,
the government is all set to set up a Group of Ministers (GoM)
to deal with the issue of corruption in the framework of
five-point agenda outlined by Congress President Sonia Gandhi.

The issue of corruption and ways to tackle it figured at
the meeting of Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh here Thursday.

Though corruption was not on the agenda of the Cabinet
meeting, the issue was discussed briefly, with some members
expressing their views, sources said.

The GoM, which is expected to be headed by Finance
Minister Pranab Mukherjee, is likely to include Home Minister
P Chidambaram, Defence Minister A K Antony, HRD Minister Kapil
Sibal and Law Minister Veerappa Moily, sources said.

The Group will devise a roadmap for implementing the
five-point action plan outlined by Gandhi at the AICC Plenary
here last month to battle corruption, they said.

Her prescription included fast-tracking all cases
against public servants including politicians, taking forward
the proposal of State-funding of elections, legislative and
clear procedures to ensure transparency in public procurement
and shedding of discretionary powers by Chief Ministers and
all Ministers, including at the Centre.

She had also suggested an open competitive system of
exploiting natural resources was also needed.
At the Cabinet meeting today, the discussion was
inconclusive because the meeting was short as the Prime
Minister and some other Ministers had to attend to various
programmes, the sources said.

The discussion on corruption at the Cabinet came amid
the government moves to bring an Ordinance on Lokpal which
will bring the Prime Minister within its purview.
The government, sources said, wants the issue to be part
part of the President`s Address to the Nation on the eve of
the Republic Day later this month.

According to the Lokpal Bill under preparation, the
Lokpal shall consist of a Chairperson who is or has been a
Chief Justice or a judge of the Supreme Court. It will also
have two members who have either been the judges of the
Supreme Court or the Chief Justices of the High Courts.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, January 6, 2011 - 22:02

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