Bahuguna to carry out amendments to Lokayukta Bill

CM Vijay Bahuguna said he would carry out certain amendments in the Uttarakhand Lokayukta Bill, which was passed by the state Assembly unanimously.

Dehra Dun: Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna
on Sunday said he would carry out certain amendments in the
Uttarakhand Lokayukta Bill, which was passed by the state
Assembly unanimously in November last.

"We have to take (lower) judiciary out of purview of the
Lokaykta Bill and carry out certain amendments," Bahuguna said
as the bill faced an uncertain future with the Centre not
showing any willingness to give its final approval.

However, Bahuguna did not comment as to when the
amendments will be carried out.

While the lower judiciary will be covered under the
lokayukta, judges of the state high court will not (not) be
under the purview of the measure which has won praise from
Anna Hazare.

After giving assent to the bill on November one last
year, Governor Margaret Alva had sent the bill to President
Pratibha Patil for final approval.
Since then, the bill is lying in limbo, official sources

Even former chief minister B C Khanduri, who once used to
describe the bill as a major achievement of his government, is
not saying much on the issue after the Assembly elections.

But when quizzed, Khanduri said he had asked the centre
repeatedly to give its approval in order to fight corruption.

"I want to make it clear that the bill is being held up
at the centre," Khanduri said.
After the assent of the Governor, the bill was sent to
President Pratibha Patil as the subject falls under the
concurrent list.

Significantly, the Lokayukta bill was one of the major
poll planks of the BJP during the Assembly polls.

The BJP, however, fell one seat short of becoming the
single largest party in the state.

In one such reminder, Khanduri said he himself wrote a
letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for the early
clearance of the bill which would help eradicate corruption.

In a separate reminder, chief secretary Subhash Kumar had
also sent a similar letter to the centre for early approval of
the bill, Khanduri said.

When asked why the central government was delaying the
bill, Khanduri said it was largely due to its tough

"The bill drafted by the centre is in much diluted form
as compared to the one we have passed," he said.
On November one last year, the state assembly passed the
lokayukta bill which brings in its net the post of Chief
Minister, ministers, MLAs and government servants including
IAS and IPS officers with a provision of life imprisonment or
more severe punishment.

Khanduri, who took inspiration from the Anna Hazare
movement, said the bill will go a long way in the fight
against corruption.

On November 3, Governor Margaret Alva gave her assent and
lauded it also.


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