New Delhi: The final draft of the Jan Lokpal Bill was cleared by the Delhi Cabinet on Monday.
The anti-corruption Bill is largely based on Uttarakhand Lokayukta Bill. However, it differs on some points, including the inclusion of chief minister in its ambit, the official said.
The meeting, which was chaired by Kejriwal to discuss the fine prints of the bill, went on for around two hours.
Soon after assuming the office on December 28, Kejriwal had said his government would pass the promised Jan Lokpal Bill from Ramlila ground by the first week of February.
A committee headed by the Chief Secretary and secretaries of Urban Development, Law and Finance departments, besides eminent advocate Rahul Mehra has been given the responsibility of drafting the Jan Lokpal Bill.
Following are five points on which the draft of Delhi Lokpal Bill differs from original Jan Lokpal Bill as passed by both houses of parliament last year.
1. Jan Lokpal Bill: Lokpal will be selected by 5 members: by PM, Leader of Opposition, Speaker, CJI, and one jurist nominated by these 4.
Delhi Lokpal Bill: Selection committee will be comprised of 7 members including Chief Minister of Delhi (Chairperson of selection committee), Leader of Opposition, 2 judges of Delhi High Court, 1 person from previous chairpersons of Lokpal, and 2 other members to be selected by other members.
2. Jan Lokpal Bill: The Lokpal would have to get the complaints investigated by any investigating agency, including the CBI, all of which would continue to remain under the administrative control of the government. The transfer, postings and post-retirement jobs of CBI officers would be under the control of the govt, thus compromising the independence of the investigative machinery.
Delhi Lokpal Bill: The Lokpal in Delhi can suspend officer during investigation. He/she can recommend punishment amounting to of dismissal, removal or reduction in rank. He/she can attach property and assets acquired by the corrupt officer. He/she can punish public servant with 6 months imprisonment or fine or both if he fails to comply with lokpal orders. Lokpal will have powers to issue search warrant to officers not less than ACP rank or equivalent.
3. Jan Lokpal Bill: No mention of Whistleblower protection and Citizens Charter in the government’s bill.
Delhi Lokpal Bill: In case of threat to whistleblowers, investigation shall be fast tracked and completed within 3 months.
4. Jan Lokpal Bill: Any person making a false or frivolous complaint could be jailed for up to 1 year, or a fine of up to Rs 1 lakh, which will deter even honest complainants from going to the Lokpal.
Delhi Lokpal Bill: If the complaint is found to be malafied, the court may impose a fine of up to Rs 5 lakh or an imprisonment up to one year or both.
5. Jan Lokpal Bill: The Lokpal Bill as passed by parliament makes no reference to fine imposed on Grievance Redressal Officer in case they fail to discharge their duties within prescribed time.
Delhi Lokpal Bill: Penalty of up to Rs 500 each day but not exceeding Rs 50, 000 to be recovered from the salaries of the Grievance Redressal Officer or government official responsible for the non delivery of the service.