Joint draft panel on Lokayukta Act meets in Pune


A joint committee, comprising activist Anna Hazare and members of civil society, which is tasked with preparing a new Lokayukta Act in Maharashtra, met here Tuesday.

The law to be drafted by the 10-member panel will be presented in the upcoming session of the state legislature, beginning June 17.

Besides five representatives from civil society, including Hazare, the committee also consists of Maharashtra principal secretary and other officials.

The panel will discuss and deliberate on the draft of the Lokayukta bill on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The committee was set up as per the assurance was given by Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis in February this year when Hazare had sat on a hunger strike demanding a strong Lokayukta Act.

Before attending the meeting, Hazare said, “the purpose of the meeting is to come out with a draft to formulate a strong Lokayukta Act in Maharashtra. After holding detailed discussions and deliberations, the draft Act will be readied and tabled in the upcoming session”.

Apart from Hazare, other members of the civil society are Vishwambhar Chaudhary, former IAS officer Umeshchandra Sarangi, Shaym Sundar Asawa and Balasaheb Pathade.

Responding to a query, Hazare lauded the performance of Fadnavis as a chief minister. “The overall approach of the CM towards Lokayukta is positive,” he added.

The anti-graft crusader further said the performance of the state government was better than that of the Centre.

Hazare hoped that the proposed Lokayukta Act will become a model for the Centre like the Right to Information (RTI) Act which was initially enacted in Maharashtra.

“The proposed Act would be the first revolutionary measure which will prove to be a strong and effective tool to put brakes on corruption,” he said, adding that since a Lokpal has been appointed at the Centre, a Lokayukta needs to be appointed in the state.

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