The proposed move by the Central government to incorporate section 17 (A) in the Prevention of Corruption Act will render investigating agencies such as CBI and ACB ineffective, said Lok Satta Party founder-president Jayaprakash Narayan. Section 17(A) would make it imperative for the investigative agencies to take prior permission of the government for investigation of corruption charges against government employees — from a clerk to a high level official. Such a proposal would undermine the Lokpal and the fight against corruption, he said in a statement here on Saturday.
Dr. Narayan said the above section would require the CBI and ACB to take every case to the notice of Lokpal and Lokayukta. There were 80 lakh Central government employees and about 10 lakh employees in some big states and over all the number of government employees in the country is about two crore. In other words such a stipulation would practically stall investigation into corruption charges against government employees. One could appreciate taking Lokpal permission at the stage of prosecution in alleged corruption cases but not for even taking up investigation, he said. Dr. Narayan said unless the CBI and ACB had autonomy, they would not be able to investigate and crack corruption cases. He called upon Parliament members, irrespective of political affiliation, to fight against the proposed Section 17(A) in the Prevention of Corruption Act.
Courtesy: The Hindu