Himachal Lokayukta bill ‘ultra vires’ to constitution : Dhumal


By : Mohan Verma

Leader of opposition Prem Kumar Dhumal alleged yesterday that Himachal Pradesh Lokayukta bill introduced by Congress government in the state legislative assembly on Wednesday  is ‘ultra vires’ to constitution of India as it is violating article 311.

Addressing media persons, Mr. Dhumal said that some sections of new Lokayukta bill tabled by Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh in the state assembly violates article 311 of Indian constitution and should be withdrawn before it comes for discussion today.

Under Article 311 of constitution of India bar state assembly for making law violates provisions of central act, he argued alleging that bill introduced by Mr. Singh about Lokayukta in the state assembly could be turned down by the President of India while taking ascent, if it would pass by state assembly as it has certain conflicting sections against the two central acts.

He elaborated that new Lokayukta bill is against the section 197(2) of CrPC which pertains to persecution sectioning authority currently vested in Governor, which had been changed in the new bill.

“It has been found that while taking persecution sanction in Common Wealth Games scam it was allowed by Lt. Governor of Delhi, similarly, Governor of Maharashtra in Adarash Scam,” leader of opposition pointed out.

He added that new bill also had no provisions to set special police station with Lokayukta to register case before investigation as it is mandatory under Sec. 19 of Prevention of Corruption Act.

BJP government in state had brought a Lokayukta bill in 2012 which was currently pending before President of India for ascent.

“During me as Chief Minister of this state, I had raised the matter with the President of India and union home minister for early clearance of the bill passed by state assembly in 2012,” he claimed that BJP Lokayukta bill was much realistic as desired by Anna Hazare.

New bill brought by Congress is not only flawed but it is against the article 311 of constitution, which should be withdrawn immediately before it comes for discussion today, Mr. Dhumal demanded.

He claimed that last BJP rule had made provision people participation in selection of Lokayukta.

“Mandatory provisions had been made in the Lokayukta bill (brought by BJP) to display names of candidates (Lokayukta and its members) in public domain first,” Mr. Dhumal pointed out that now search committee also provided in the new bill, is not bound to display the names of short listed candidates after putting up it in website for seeking public comment but directly send names to select committee for final selection.

Mr. Dhumal said that now select committee have made five members comprising Chief Minister as its chairperson, leader of opposition, chief justice of high court or his nominee, Speaker of assembly including a jurists, however, in earlier bill there was provision of three members select committee comprising of former three.

He informed the media that BJP Legislative party would continue the boycott of house today and is likely to abstain from discussion on the bill.

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ML Verma is a Senior journalist, with more than a decade of experience of active reporting for electronic media, news agencies and fast paced online media.

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