Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Why Jan Lokpal Bill, Why Anna Hazare?? Abridged Differences Between Existing System And System Proposed By Civil Society.

Existing System
System Proposed By Civil Society

No politician or senior officer ever goes to jail despite huge evidence because Anti Corruption Branch (ACB) and CBI directly come under the government. Before starting investigation or initiating prosecution in any case, they have to take permission from the same bosses, against whom the case has to be investigated.

Lokpal at the centre and Lokyaukta at state level will be independent bodies. ACB and CBI will be merged into these bodies. They will have power to initiate investigations and prosecution against any officer or politician without needing anyone’s permission. Investigation should be completed within 1 year and trial to get over in next 1 year. Within two years, the corrupt should go to jail.

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, it’s advice is never implemented

Lokpal and Lokyaukta will have complete powers to order dismissal of a corrupt officer. CVC and all departmental vigilance will be merged into Lokpal and state vigilance will be merged into Lokyaukta

No action taken against corrupt judges because permission is required from Chief Justice Of India to even register an FIR against corrupt judges.

Lokpal & Lokyaukta will have powers to investigate and prosecute any judge without needing anyone’s permission.

Nowhere to go – People expose corruption but no action is taken on their complaints.

Lokpal & Lokyaukta will have to enquire into and hear every complaint.

CBI and Vigilance departments lack transparency. Their functioning is so secret that it encourages corruption within these agencies.

All investigations in Lokpal & Lokyaukta shall be transparent. After completion of investigation, all case records shall be open to public. Complaints against any staff of Lokpal & Lokyaukta shall be enquired and punishment announced within two months.

Weak and corrupt people are appointed as heads of anti-corruption agencies.

Politicians will have absolutely no say in selections of Chairperson and members of Lokpal & Lokyaukta. Selections will take place through transparent and public participatory process.

Citizens face harassment in government offices. Sometimes they are forced to pay bribes. One can only complaint to senior officers. Hardly any action is taken on complaints because often senior officers also get their cut.

Lokpal & Lokyaukta will get public grievances resolved  in time bound manner, impose a penalty of Rs. 250 per day of delay to be deducted from the salary of guilty officer and award that amount as compensation to the aggrieved citizen.

Nothing in law to recover ill gotten wealth. A corrupt person can come out of jail and enjoy that money.

Loss caused to the government due to corruption will be recovered from all accused.

Small punishment for corruption. Punishment for corruption is minimum 6 months and maximum 7 years.

Enhanced punishment – The punishment would be minimum 5 years and maximum of life imprisonment.

"At 78, Anna is not fasting for himself, he is fasting for the future of my kid. I will myself fast on 5th April for a day and ask my 5 year daughter also to skip a meal on 5th April," 
Rakesh, a software engineer. 


There was much worse corruption in Hong Kong in 1970s than we have in India today. Collusion between police and mafia increased and crime rate went up. Lakhs of people came on the streets. As a result, the government was forced to set up an Independent Comission Against Corruption (ICAC), which was given complete powers. In the first instance, ICACsacked 119 out of 180 police officers. This sent a strong message to the bureaucracy that corruption would not be tolerated. Today, Hong Kong has one of the most honest governance machinery. 

Arvind Kejriwal
(The author is eminent RTI and anti-corruption activist and Ramon Magsaysay Award Winner)


  1. thanks BD for above enlightenment...this bill really looks promising..but it can lead to a pretty exposed anti corruption system which may have major loop holes..but yes with government involvement it can be rectified and fine tuned to help the poor and of luck Anna...

  2. Government Involvement is and will always lead to doom. This Bill Mandates The Lokpal And Lokyukta As Independent Bodies, From The Appointment To The Executive Powers To The Removal. And That Too Along With Total Transparency.