CM announces Rs 2 cr corpus for Lokayukta

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Bangalore, Sep 22 (UNI) Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy today announced Rs two crore corpus for Lokayukta.

Presiding over the two-day Ninth All India Lokayuktas/Lokpals/Upalokayuktas Conference here, he said his government was ready to help the Lokayuktas fight corruption.

Mr Kumaraswamy said the Lokayukta had been given suomotu power and government officers, including Chief Secretary, were brought in its ambit.

''As and when the situation arises, the power may be increased to include elected representatives, including Ministers, under the Lokayukta purview,'' he added.

Recalling an incident, the Chief Minister said his father and Former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda (who was also present in the function) during his tenure as Minister in the state had stood before the Lokayukta.

But now the elected representatives were objecting to the moves against them by the Lokayukta. ''However big one may be, one should respect an organisation like Lokayukta,'' he added.

Mr Kumaraswamy regretted instances where Lokayukta was being used for taking revenge. This should not happen, he said.

Stating during his recent 'Village Stay' he came across plenty of cases against lower officials demanding bribe for issuing ration card, Mr Kumaraswamy said the Lokayukta should act in curbing corruption at lower level also.

All India Lokayuktas/Lokpals/UpaLokayuktas Association President S H A Raza, in his opening remarks, regretted that only 17 states had established Lokayuktas while others cited financial burden as the reason for not setting up such bodies.

He said though the Lokpal Bill was presented eight times in Parliament, it was yet to be passed.

Justice Raza appealed to Union Law Minister H R Bharadwaj to accord Constitutional status to Lokayuktas by amending the Constitution and introduce a Bill in the next session of Parliament with a view to strengthen the Lokayuktas to fulfil their commitment to eradicate corruption and mal-administration.

UNI

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