Will Modi Government give consent for Jan Lokpal legislation as aspired by Arvind Kejriwal, at least for Delhi?

At this time with so much feathers in his cap, upon the landslide victory in Delhi Polls, Arvind Kejriwal will have to shape a regime with fortitude while he has no worries on losing his party’s majority due to the desertion of MLAs to other parties .

JAN LOKPAL BJP Will Modi Government Give consent for Jan Lokpal Legislation?

AAP’s triumph proved to be the outcome of longing aspirations of citizens in Delhi where Congress not only misruled and created monumental scams but tested their maximum repugnance by many acts of subversion of laws that disturbed the empirical social life prevailing there. A series of rapes and assaults on women had pushed back Delhi to the repressive rules of by gone centuries and with the emergence of Kejriwal the people of Delhi did get a good forum to integrate them through AAP.

People know that last year Arvind Kejriwal stopped his Janatha Durbar and apologized to people, He should never nurse the idea of conducting the archaic durbar again, instead it is desirable to initiate for an effective mechanism that can facilitate people approaching concerned government offices to put-forth their needs while correspondingly get grievances enlisted to the CMs cell. Further his officials should give feed backs within a stipulated time.

It is needless to explain that the AAP government will be poised to show distinctly as a people’s choice while they had encountered misrule and colossal scams one after another. It is imperative that the new government may have to display high degree of austerity measures right from the oath-taking ceremony. Being a Chief Minister he is expected to maintain minimum of protocols especially in respect of his personal security. Otherwise he will be giving a chance to some anti-social elements to react to him meanly.

Arvind Kejriwal may have to graciously give up his ostentatious dialogues and distorted detestation towards PM Narendra Modi or his government which posed a real challenge to the deceptive UPA regime on behalf of the righteous people of this country. Also he has to advise party-men not to over-celebrate the poll victory while the Delhi government truly needs a profound support from the government at the centre. Everyone must know that Delhi Assembly lacks control on police, public order and land as all three bodies – NDMC, MCD and Cantonment Board are controlled by the central government.

The whole nation did approve Arvind Kejriwal for creating a new precedent in consolidating the power of civil society and thousands of followers will be alongside him in the days to come. The whole of India is awaiting his positive moves and ideal decisions so as to bequeath the best government for the citizens of Delhi.

Arvind Kejriwal after his sworning ceremony as Chief Minister of Delhi had stated that his government will bring the Lokpal Bill soon.

jan lok pal bill Will Modi Government Give consent for Jan Lokpal Legislation?

We know that though his short lived previous government had prepared to adopt the Jan Lokpal Bill for Delhi, but could not introduce the same at the assembly due to reasons beyond his control. Finally he resigned when the Bill was found blocked in the state Assembly. He had written to Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde for the withdrawal of the 2002 order making the consent of the central government obligatory for laws introduced into Delhi’s assembly, but it went to deaf ears. Arvind Kejriwal`s letter to Lt Governor Najeeb Jung did state that Constitution doesn`t warrant the consent to be obtained from Centre before passing the Bill. He had asked about the need of an elected government for Delhi if Centre`s consent was needed to pass every bill!

Ironically the Solicitor General Mohan Parasaran wanted the Delhi government to get approval from the Centre before tabling the Bill in the assembly. The Solicitor General’s view that the Jan Lokpal would be repugnant to the central law, namely ‘the Lokpal and Lokayukta Act’ was contested by Arvind Kejriwal by stating that – In case the law enacted at the assembly is flawed, it can be blocked while the same goes for the President’s approval.

Parliament had lastly passed the sweeping anti-corruption bill on 18th December 2013 and the then PM Man Mohan Singh did describe it as ‘a historic and landmark step’ to fight corruption in the country. The Samajwadi Party (SP) was the lone dissenter while many other parties gave their approval to the Lokpal and Lokayukta Bill, 2011. The said Bill was held up at the Rajya Sabha for almost two years while opposition members had qualms on the draft passed by the Lok Sabha in December 2011 and hauled it through a select committee for recommendations. It underwent just few changes and the amended Bill was tabled in the Rajya Sabha. It was the Law Minister Kapil Sibal who moved the amended Lokpal Bill in the Lok Sabha.

SP leader Mulayam Singh captured headlines by his direct disgraceful blabber terming the Bill as a dangerous one that leads to anarchy and should be withdrawn. Consequently SP had walked out of the Lok Sabha to demonstrate its protest against the Bill.

It is to be noted that apart from establishing Lokpal, the Bill gave permission to states for formation of Lokayuktas within a year of the notification of the law.

Lokpal will consist of a chairperson and a maximum of eight members. It will cover the Prime Minister with certain conditions, ministers, current and former MPs and legislators, government employees and staff of companies funded or controlled by the central government. The think- tank will have to track the work of Parliament. There are provisions for penalty for false and frivolous complaints. Naturally, Lokpal will have superintendence over the Central Bureau of Investigation in cases referred by it.

lok pal bill Will Modi Government Give consent for Jan Lokpal Legislation?

Civil Society leader Anna Hazare ended his nine-day long fast at Ralegan Siddhi in Maharashtra immediately after the passing of the Bill at Lok Sabha. He made a sensitive remark cautioning activists stating that the Bill passed by both houses of parliament should not make them complacent as their real struggle will be to remain ever vigilant. His former disciple Arvind Kejriwal continued his crusade as a dissenter outside parliament and AAP had the fortitude to openly say that Lokpal legislation is just a ‘Welcome Bill’ for corrupt politicians! He called the day as one for social activism in the country which evidently depicted all ingredient of a treachery to the promise made to the people at the Ramlila Maidan in Delhi.

Now the question arises in my mind is that….Will the Central government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi give consent for Jan Lokpal legislation as aspired by Arvind Kejriwal? Let me give interesting information about the personality who actually initiated for Lokpal for our country.

The word Lokpal was originally coined in 1963 by late L.M. Singhvi (Laxmi Mall Singhvi), a member of parliament during a debate. He was a jurist, parliamentarian, scholar, writer and a diplomat. Probably he became well known as a Diplomat with an unusual record as the second-longest-serving Indian High Commissioner (after V K Krishna Menon) in England. Singhvi was engaged in his legal practice at the Jodhpur trial and sessions courts at the time when the Nehru government vigorously pushed an agenda of social modernization which amounted to dismissing the customs and traditions of India as backward and despicable. He was drawn to politics as an opponent of this radical social agenda championed by Nehru during which period the radical legislation was passed during the term of the second Lok Sabha (1957-62). Sanghvi contested in the Third Lok Sabha election as an independent candidate from his home constituency Jodhpur.

Upon winning the poll and becoming a MP he proposed the creation of an independent, statutory vigilance body with investigative powers, tasked with unearthing corruption in government. In fact his proposal was based on his own study on the role of the Ombudsman in Scandinavian countries. Since he lost the election of 1967 and he opted to keep aloof from politics there afterwards. His career ended on a high note when he was made a Rajya Sabha MP by a government which represented his own beliefs in 1999 prior to which he was rightly conferred the Padma Bhushan in 1998.

L.M.Sanghvi was very fortunate in 1991 when Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao identified him as the High Commissioner for England. He was a person who was committed to diplomacy and evidently earned the reputation by staying in office till 1997 undisturbed during the brief tenures of the next two Prime Ministers. He lead an Indian delegation in 1993 to the United Nations conference on Human Rights in Vienna.

L M Singhvi Lok pal bill Will Modi Government Give consent for Jan Lokpal Legislation?

Singhvi was also president of the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts and a member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) at The Hague, in Netherlands which was established by a treaty in 1899 as an intergovernmental organisation providing a variety of dispute resolution services to the international community. Further he was a member of the Commission of Inquiry into Administration of Justice in Trinidad and Tobago, 1992. L M Singhvi died at the age of 76 after ailing for a brief period. He was survived by wife, Kamila, son and Congress MP, Abhishek Manu Singhvi, and a daughter.

Lastly let me reveal a big shocker to my readers… L M Singhvi ‘s only son Abhishek Manu Singhvi is a controversial lawyer and popular leader belonging to the Congress, the party to his father was opposed throughout lifetime! Ironically Abhishek who chaired the 30-member parliamentary panel in 2011 had made a sarcastic comment in an interview – ‘Yes, there is a method to the madness. We don’t want a top-heavy Lokpal set up. We want it to be lean, mean and efficient!’

Pity that the son, a member in Rajya Sabha carries forward the legacy of his father erroneously!

By: Madan Menon Thottasseri

Image Source: 1, 2, 3, 4

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