Monday 22 July 2024

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Demand to reinforce anti-graft act till Goa Lokpal comes

 

Social activists have demanded that the Prevention of Corruption Act be brought back into force till Goa gets a Lokpal act.

A workshop on ‘Lokayukta: Goa’s Concerns’, held in the presence of Karnataka Lokayukta Justice Santosh Hegde, brought to the fore that the state government has already rescinded the Prevention of Corruption Act even before the new Lokpal bill was assented to by the Governor.

On the other hand, the state government has decided to withdraw the Goa Lokpal bill, introduced in 2003, as several central ministries have objected to certain clauses in it.

Justice Hegde however said the draft Goa Lokpal bill was much more effective than the Karnataka Lokayukta act.

Law Commission chairman Ramakant Khalap claimed that the Corruption of Prevention act definitely has some teeth and he could propose to revoke the notification rescinding the act as the Goa Lokpal bill was not passed in the Assembly.

Adv Cleofato Almeida Coutinho, member of the Law Commission, however observed that the Prevention of Corruption act was totally ineffective and was unable to pin down a single corrupt person in the state administration till date.

Law secretary Pramod Kamat informed the gathering of around 100 social activists, professionals and media persons that withdrawal of the Goa Lokpal bill could not take place in the last Assembly session due to pandemonium in the House by the opposition.

"The ministry of law and justice has made certain observations relating to the clause 19 of the Bill," he said.

Ministry of Personnel said that jurisdiction provisions in Goa Lokayukta Bill and Model State Vigilance Commission Bill overlapped.

"Department of Legal Affairs also stated that clause 18 of the Bill appears to be contrary to the provisions of section 22 of Right to Information (RTI) Act," Kamat said.

"As the bill suffers from legal infirmity, it was decided to withdraw it," Kamat said.

Speaker Pratapsing Rane, speaking earlier, said Goa Lokpal bill was definitely more effective than the Prevention of Corruption act but was unfortunately could not see light of the day though the Assembly had passed it.

“Corruption starts from top to bottom and time has come to effectively nail it down”, he felt.

The workshop was organized by the International Centre, Goa. Several speakers including ICG director Nandini Sahay, Rajya Sabha MP Shantaram Naik, social activist Satish Sonak, writer Damodar Mauzo, Goa Union of Journalists president Prakash Kamat, journalist Sandesh Prabhudesai expressed their views on Goa Lokayukta legislation.  

Lokayukta act cannot become a monster, dictator or unconstitutional as the courts as well as other checks and balances are in place, said Justice Hegde.

He also said that corruption would not be totally rooted out with one Lokayukta but should be seen as the first effective step towards rooting out corruption.


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Total Comments :4

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Hopefully the Central Lok Pal Drafting Committee, will also draft a model Lok Ayukta Bill to be adoped by all States an U.T's. That should keep the spoilsport away 10-foot pole apart from interfering.

 
Ludovico , Old-Goa

Presently there is no Lokayukta or the Prevention of corruption act --in force in Goa-- Is this a deliberate move to give free hand to the corrupt to loot and go unpunished...? Go ahead and loot with impunity....there is nothing to stop you....... Dont be scared......Make hey while the sun shines....

 
vishwas prabhudesai , loliem

When the imminent passage of the Lok Pal Bill at the Centre in June and therefore The Lok Ayukta will have a model and parameters to work on, why is the Goa Prevention of Corruption is brought up. This will fudge the issue. Everyone is waiting with bated breath. Some of our legislators have not done much in their career and now what can anyone expect?

 
Ludovico , Old-Goa

Mr. KHALAP SHOULD NOW RETIRE FROM SERVICES & GIVE WAY FOR THE YOUTH FOR A BETTER GOA GOVERNANCE,, a BETTER INDIAN GOVERNACE.... Wid This Issue, where in All Congress Leaders Wud be.. LOK PAL BILL IS FRO PEOPLE all these politicians Should Better Stay Away From any Amendments Which they might Have studied Care Fully.....

 
Chetan , PANJIM

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