in Politics

What is Jan Lokpal Bill?

Update on 18 Oct – I have tried to answer some commonly asked questions about this movement, and also written about what all it will take to become an Anna Hazare..

I thought it right to write a post describing what Jan Lokpal Bill is and why is it needed. To give a brief history, Lokpal Bill was first introduced in parliament in 1968. It has been brought in parliament on eight times on later occasions, but has never been passed by the parliament. It is a bill that is supposed to give powers to citizens to sue the people responsible for corruption. A similar kind of independent agency disappeared corruption from Hong Kong a few decades ago.

The government is again thinking of introducing a Lokpal Bill in parliament this year, and the National Advisory Council (NAC) chaired by Sonia Gandhi is considering it. But as it stands today, the bill is riddled with loopholes, defeating its very purpose. Social activists have remarked it to be a toothless bill and not at all acceptable. An alternative bill, the Jan Lokpal Bill has been drafted by Justice Santosh Hegde (Lokayukta of Karnataka), Prashant Bhushan and Arvind Kejriwal after series of consultations with public and social activists. This bill is supported by Kiran Bedi, Shanti Bhushan, Anna Hazare, etc.

The Dandi March 2 event and the subsequent ‘fast unto death’ by Anna Hazare from April 5 and Aug 16 were in support of this ‘Jan Lokpal Bill’. The activists have already sent the bill to the PM and all CMs but there has been no response. After the ‘fast unto death’ was announced by Anna Hazare, he was invited for talks by the PM, but the response was bad as the PM said the government has no time for corruption till May 13. This after the numerous corruption scams like the Commonwealth Games, Adarsh Society, 2G scam being uncovered in the past months.

The Zero Rupee Note - Stop Corruption

The Zero Rupee Note - Stop Corruption

The present system to fight corruption in India can be described in some points as below –

  1. The Anti Corruption Branch and CBI comes under the government. Despite having evidence, it is very difficult to convict people as they have to take permission from the same bosses, against whom the case has to be investigated.
  2. No corrupt officer is dismissed from the job because Central Vigilance Commission, which is supposed to dismiss corrupt officers, is only an advisory body. Whenever it advises government to dismiss any senior corrupt officer, its advice is never implemented.
  3. No action is taken against corrupt judges because permission is required from the Chief Justice of India to even register an FIR against corrupt judges
  4. The functioning of CBI and vigilance departments is secret and hence it promotes corruption.
  5. Weak and corrupt people are appointed as heads of these institutions by the government.
  6. Citizens face harassment in government offices. Sometimes they are forced to pay bribes. One can only complaint to senior officers. No action is taken on complaints because senior officers also get their cut.
  7. Nothing in law to recover ill gotten wealth. A corrupt person can come out of jail and enjoy that money.
  8. Small punishment for corruption- Punishment for corruption is minimum 6 months and maximum 7 years.

As you can see, in the present system, there is no deterrent for any public official to engage in an act of corruption. Some of the salient features of the Jan Lokpal Bill are –

  1. An institution called LOKPAL in the centre and LOKAYUKTA in each state will be set up. These institutions will completely independent of the governments, just like the Supreme Court and the Election Commission. No minister can influence their investigations.
  2. Investigation in any case will have to be completed in one year. Trial should be completed in next one year so that the corrupt officer, or politician goes to jail in two years max.
  3. The loss that a corrupt person caused to the government will be recovered at the time of conviction.
  4. If any work of any citizen is not done in prescribed time in any government office, Lokpal will impose financial penalty on guilty officers, which will be given as compensation to the complainant. So, you could approach Lokpal if your ration card or passport or voter card is not being made or if police is not registering your case or any other work is not being done in prescribed time. Lokpal will have to get it done in a month’s time.
  5. Election of Lokpal officials – What if government appoint corrupt and weak people as Lokpal members? That won’t be possible because its members will be selected by judges, citizens and constitutional authorities and not by politicians, through a completely transparent and participatory process.
  6. What if some officer in Lokpal becomes corrupt? The entire functioning of Lokpal/ Lokayukta will be completely transparent. Any complaint against any officer of Lokpal shall be investigated and the officer dismissed within two months.
  7. What will happen to existing anti-corruption agencies? CVC, departmental vigilance and anti-corruption branch of CBI will be merged into Lokpal. Lokpal will have complete powers and machinery to independently investigate and prosecute any officer, judge or politician.
  8. The punishment would be minimum 5 years and maximum of life imprisonment.

Please read my two poems “Fast with Anna” and “Messenger of Hope” and join in this fight against corruption. We must remember Anna and others on fast are fighting for US and OUR India

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230 Comments

  1. I am with Anna Hazareji Against corruption and in support of Passing the Janlokpabill.

  2. I only hope we do not give up half way. We get too distracted by whatever the media feeds us and tend to leave things (important things) unfinished. I really appreciate this initiative. I have even shared it on my blog. We need to kick corruption out. It’s now or never.

  3. Jis Deshne 24 Mahinome poora samvidhan likha, uske har pahelupar vichar vinimay kiya , wo parit kiya aur lagu bhi kiya. usi deshko ye ek kanoon ka masauda sansadke samne rakhne k liye 42 baras kyon lage? Its 65% of our freedom time. Annasaheb tumhi ya lokana sodu naka

  4. who will punish corrupt lokpal n lokayukt?

  5. There is no control on this dirty politicians. they brought back India to Kings time. today the democrasy is just a namesake. But they rule us like a King. I hope Janlokpal will be light to new power of democrasy.

    I think a representative of people must be educated enough and a person with good testmony of life.If anyone having a case/ trail pending on him should not be given chance.

  6. elections shud be held online 2 get maximum voting from intellictuals

  7. in india can a FIR be lodged against a minister or policeman or the P.M by any citizen of the country????

  8. i support Jan Lokpal Bill and anna but i don’t like merging of CVC, departmental vigilance and anti-corruption branch of CBI into Lokpal.

  9. Hi

    We support this bill. In spite of this some few more modification is required to this bill.

    1.If the crime is proved a normal Cell has to be given to the criminal.(i.e no special cells should be give. It should be c class cell)

    2. The Case should be executed in front of public. A separate TV channel ,Paper, webpage should be started for this purpose and it has to go on live. Paper should be provided with the final judge statements.

    3. Rights to information act cases should be added along with this.

    4. If a crime is proven, the corresponding person should not be eligible to contest in election nor he is eligible for any government related exemptions/jobs etc.*based on the crime.

    5. If any loss to the county is made due to the crime(i.e. like A. Raja) his property & liquid funds should be taken as government fund and use for compensating the loss for the county. Even the persons related to this cases property should be made as counties national fund.

    6.This body can interfere to any activity of the county.(i.e election process, public sector exams, Educational system ,Politicians Funds in other international bank ect ).

  10. i think YOG guru BABA RAMDEV with his supporters must join ANNA if he really wants to fight against corruption i am also baba supporter but now with anna and calling BABA RAMDEV

  11. All the salient features given above is hundred percent in the public interest so i hope and appeal to the Govt. of India i.e., Parliament may be sanctioned this “Jan Lok Pal Bill”.

  12. We should really appreciate the old man Anna hazare why because he is fighting for the nation and future India. I would like give up my support to him who is on fast unto death. By this the Govt. of India must necessarily pass the Bill in the Parliament for the sake of the citizens of India- Kishore, Seethammapeta, VSP…….

  13. I think It is the answer to all of us who feel helpless like me when see the corruption and want to inform about it. But to whom – as there is no means for it, No one is accountable for anything
    A bad road construction, or faulty flyover, unauthorized building , etc every one see but to whom to complaint- entire MCD cant’t be blamed ,neither there there is any system which will tell how is accountable. SO friends now there is a ray of hope, we should support ANNA for us and our future

  14. I think whole country should come together and make this bill pass.

  15. All the corrupt officers,politicians & others should be sent immediately behind the bars immediately. no communication to any of the near and dear.until the case solved.
    …..

  16. To be a Indians we should support this together to get this movement.This is the best solution to make our country clean.Already we lost so many things from our country to foreign people now our politicians itself is eating our country.we should not allow it anymore.

    Please join your hands in this movement and let our country to become clean.This is only for our people and our country only.

  17. Every one should back Anna hazare . In ancient time Lord krishna and Ram had taken a birth to remove the demons Now Anna hazare may be the same . I hope he will get success in removing the demons of curruption and the currupted politicians

  18. if somehow lokpal is being imposed or followed we’ll not be able 2 send d corrupt people behind d bars coz they have powers n contacts….however they’ll think 4 at least once before hatchingsome conspiracy after imposition of this bill…support it if u need a secure n pious govenance………..i whole-heartedly support it……..

  19. I think this is a very rare oppurtunity for us to leave our cynicism and make an effort to make this country free from corruption by supporting Anna Hazare in every way possible. This will go long way in giving good future to our country.

  20. We should really appreciate the old man Anna hazare why because he is fighting for the nation and future India. Anna hazare may be our God like Ram and Krishna. every indian should support him.I think whole country should come together and make this bill pass.

  21. we are talking here about LOKPAL or LOKAUKT. Who will be this lokpal or lokaukt????????again any corrupted indian. today we are pointing out one person tmrw will other. only person will change. nothing else

  22. Why the politicians kept quite or don’t dare to pass the bill. Obviously they them self proved that they are all corrupt not only politicians hole the government employees. Shame on them yaar….

  23. Now it time to show the power common peoples. So that we have to support ANNA HAJARE. He is the man who can change your life style. it is the right time to came together fight against the corruptions. Don’t forget the day when you went a Govt. Office and you have no any alternative other then to corruptions for your right work. Jai Hind !!!!!!!!!!

  24. Corruption is much dangerous than any kind of militancy. If corruption stops every thing stops automatically. with this Jan lokpal bill one more thing to be added that population control of the country should be stabilized by only 2 child to a couple not more than that . If they wanna more they will have to pay some amount to the country and the third one should not get any kind of benefits like voting power or jobs in government organization.

  25. Corruption now is an essential part or life it cannot be ruled out completely…..so whatever bill may come in form it will be their…as long as democratic India lives….

  26. if we want to make our future bright corruption must me removed. goverment should think that
    their childeren are also the future of this country. jai HIND.

  27. As a true Indian We should support this bill and Anna. I would like give up my support

  28. Anna Uncle,

    Have food first. Do justice to yourself first. The fight against injustice. This idiot Gandhi started a fasting culture people are falling into trap of it.

    Please, go and eat. We form the part of civilsied world, and can not see an septagenerian is fasting. Shame on us.. Millions of indian are watching the fun of an old man straving.. too much.

    Please have food.. after that continue fighting..

  29. Yes, this is the high time to say good bye to corruption. Enough of it now. All of us should stand and through out these so calles pure and desh bhakt ministers. But it should not end over here, what about corrupt police man, to whom we pay bribe. We should stop that.
    LETS STAND AND SUPPORT MR. ANNA HAZARE. In favour of nation and in favour of everyone.
    TOGETHER WE CAN

  30. Corruption is much dangerous than any kind of militancy. If corruption stops every thing stops automatically. with this Jan lokpal bill one more thing to be added that population control of the country should be stabilized by only 2 child to a couple not more than that .
    Don’t forget the day when you went a Govt. Office and you have no any alternative other then to corruptions for your right work…vande mataram…

  31. i liked merging of CVC, departmental vigilance and anti-corruption branch of CBI into Lokpal but i have the same question that who will punish if the lokpals become currupted? becouse as all politicians are friends and they intactly mutely support each others corruptions and scams,same could be the case with lokpals.

    and some few more modification is required to this bill.

    1.If the crime is proved a normal Cell has to be given to the criminal.(i.e no special cells should be give. It should be c class cell)

    2. The Case should be executed in front of public. A separate TV channel ,Paper, webpage should be started for this purpose and it has to go on live. Paper should be provided with the final judge statements.

    3. Rights to information act cases should be added along with this.

    4. If a crime is proven, the corresponding person should not be eligible to contest in election nor he is eligible for any government related exemptions/jobs etc.*based on the crime.

    5. If any loss to the county is made due to the crime(i.e. like A. Raja) his property & liquid funds should be taken as government fund and use for compensating the loss for the county. Even the persons related to this cases property should be made as counties national fund.

    6.This body can interfere to any activity of the county.(i.e election process, public sector exams, Educational system ,Politicians Funds in other international bank ect ).

    i support this jan lokpal bill

  32. in 1952 corruption was around 4% of our GDP..today it is around 45 -50% OF our GDP….which is near about 33 LAKH CRORE rupees…(According an editorial published in THE HINDU)…..
    Now the time is asking us to take a tough stand to stop it……OTHERWISE WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO PROVIDE BASIC NEED i.e( food , employment ,education) TO OUR 121 CRORE PEOPLE …….

  33. corruption is in india is begin with the new chield birth
    certificate. what else we explain simply you demad your child birth cerrtificate you have to give money

  34. High five for the movement and the bill drafted by civil activists. But the problem is it misses the target by miles.
    See the Minister resigned from the GOM immediately but the Chief Vigilance Commissioner didnot. The route cause of problem in India is High IQ servents and Low IQ controllers. We need to change the HRD deployment strategy. We must draft in
    1. only a limited IQ personnel to be taken in to man government JOBs
    2. The release of High IQ persons from the job spiral will send them to seek employment as political activists, University professors, Captains of Industry, seekers and creaters of value in society. It is a job as off now left for second third grade students who work their way up the intelectual stair and try to build and creat value in the limited capacity they have.
    3. In the mean while every step counts.
    My sincere regards for Anna and all other who are toiling for a cause!

    pt varruchi

  35. we shall support him and make India a corruption free country

  36. Every bill or law passed in any country always talks about how things are supposed to be or how it SHALL keep the process transparent and prosecute people on time.

    This Jan Lokpal bill is no different, is it? Who can guarantee things will happen the way they are intended to happen?? This government, or any government for that matter, has corrupt people in it. And these people are just like us.. from similar backgrounds, coming out of similar education systems and voted to power by similar people.

    Nothing will change until we individually make an effort in our day to day routine lives. There is something seriously wrong with our value system.

    So yes, pass this bill. My concern right now is Anna Hazare ji’s health. But do not expect corruption to go away..

  37. What is the problem to implement the Jan Lokpal Bill? It clearly shows and proves that the people in authority who are pass the bill are not clean as well…………… but this time they will have too… but there is another question that comes to my mind is who will punish corrupt lokpal and lokayukt, who is also the concern of Dr Monnali Dhole. I’m not trying to complicate but what if it happens. My suggestion is that the punishment should be more severe if a lokpal or lokayukt does it………..

  38. I feel Mr Anna Hazare should not take any politician from any political party, in formation or in Jan lokpal body, then only all the political parties will have moral fear while running government.It is better late than never.If this bill is passed to expectation of Mr, Anna Hazare, We are creating good future to our next generation.JAI HIND.

  39. Anna Hazare can jump up and down, NOTHING WILL HAPPEN.

    Corruption is the way of life in India. You cannot root out corruption thru some Bill or Rule.

    It has to come from within a person. An individual should have a pure conscience and I do not see a single politician or leader in India who has that feature,. there may be a few who have intention but the system will not allow them to be NOT corrupt – Live example is Dr. Singh. He may want to be non corrupt but everyone around him is corrupt so he cannot function.

    Secondly, film starts who are participating in this rally is a cruel joke. That industry is the most corrupt industry. 90% of the money is underworld and black money in this industry. They should be ashamed of themselves to jump on to this band wagon.

    Thirdly – It takes two to TANGO. (Taali ek haath se nahi bajati hai). The people who are participating in this rally/demonstration, are they willing to say that they will never pay bribe in the future; they will go thru the system come what may.

    So who are we kidding here? Let’s all go home and live with what we have.

    All this rally demonstrations are all waste of time.

  40. Well, I am not expert in democracy, liberty of people or socio-political structures. So is most of us.
    It seems all of us are honest nice human beings who want real freedom for their people achieved locally to the village level. And because there is no good leader, we were looking for someone like Anna Hazare (in Indian society a Tyagi Sevak is respected by people and there is nothing wrong in it). I’m not in my 20s, and so my analytical brain kicks in before my emotion gets chance to flow.
    And thus, as a fellow citizen of India , I want to request all of you to read the bill from various perspective and discuss with others before getting carried away with the emotional mob created by Anna Hazare and the media.

    Answer the following questions –

    – Why is media (mostly controlled by West) covering this so much
    – Why the corporations coming in support of this
    – Why was Bhagat Singh or Subhash Bose were killed
    – Why Khalistan movement was started and Indira Gandhi (and with her NAM) was killed
    – Why Sanjay Gandhi and Rajeev Gandhi were killed
    – Why LTTE vanished now ?
    – Why our countries power with couple of white people ?
    – Why wikileaks are showing so much influence of West/Nato on Indian politics ?
    – Why people like Binayak Sen get jails ?

    This is not about conspiracy. In this world, nothing is what it seems (true in Physics as well – classical reality is illusion, truth is something else, beyond the perception of common people). The world geo-politics, economics etc are so much inter-twined. To understand the truth, you need to scratch the surface.

    So, my request is to read, think, debate the bill before you get carried away with your emotion.

    I may be wrong, but my guess is this –

    – in coming future, most countries will get into energy, food, and resource crisis, and it will stay for decades. Peak oil, global warming/climate change everything point to that direction. Read this book – http://www.amazon.com/World-2050-Shaping-Civilizations-Northern/dp/0525951814/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1302281793&sr=8-1

    – So, there will be dissent at the grassroot level everywhere
    – Govt and the superpower behind the govt are trying to create laws and police infrastructure to manage the dissent in future. Essentially they are getting ready to make India a police state.
    – That way corporations can loot, steal resources from India and then sell that to where they will get the best price. It’s the extreme case of – build software cheaply in India and sell that to the developed world.
    – And in a democracy, the best way to get this change done is with people’s mob/revolution

    In Russia, and China, people came to the revolution. And then in 40/50 years what happened to those people ? Did they get their liberty ? The point is that the most suffering people want something for change, without realising what would be the effect of that change.

    So, if you can read, please read the bill, understand the risks. It’s possible there is nothing wrong in the bill. But I do not know, and you also do not know. The best way to figure would be to read, talk to more learned, intelligent people , understand the various perspectives.

  41. the next target should be to have a “NONE OF THE ABOVE” button on EVMs so that the electorate is not forced to select the “LEAST EVIL CANDIDATE (POLITICIAN)”, while ensuring that his/her voting is not done by some one else

  42. There is no limit for the greediness of netas & babus. corruption must be rooted out. This bill should come into act… We all indian must support the cause.

  43. i strongly support lokpal bill.every corrupt person should be punished even president if he is corrupt. I want to be the member of the agency. i will fight till death against corruption.
    mrinmoy das,s/o. late chinta haran das,
    manager of assam gramin vikash bank,duliajan.,assam
    mobile no.9435137389

  44. good anna hazzare keep on doing smaj seva we all r with u if we want to make our country sone ki chidiya again we have to remove corruption from our country from the root

  45. This is the first time India has come as one force to fight for the people. This will make our country strong.