Strong anti-graft law within 4 months: Khurshid

Kochi: The central government would bring in stringent anti-corruption law and electoral laws in which the corrupt and those convicted will not be able to contest elections, Union Law Minister Salman Khurshid said on Saturday.

The legislations would be brought in the coming winter session of Parliament, he said at a function organised by the Congress` minority cell. "We are also talking to political parties on whether state funding of elections is possible. Various new laws, including whistleblowers protection law and Public procurement law, would be brought," he said.

The Centre was committed to putting in place the "strongest" anti-corruption system available across the globe, he said. In the next 3-4 months, the country will have a strongest anti-corruption law and "we will implement it in total sincerity", he said. Khurshid said the Centre had taken in principle decision to implement Kerala model of reservation in all states for government jobs.

"We want to follow Reservation policy of Kerala and in central jobs, the same reservation would apply which kerala had adopted for state jobs," he said. The government was also hoping to bring in Judicial Accountability Bill, he said adding "we do not want independence of Indian judiciary to be compromised in any way".

Khurshid, also holding the Minority Affairs portfolio, said the government had identified that about 1.61 crore students need to be given minority scholarships.Earlier, it was 60 lakh students. "We hope from Kerala students from madrassa to college whose parents income was below Rs two lakh per annum would be entitled for the scholarships," he said. The Minister said there was need to work out a formula by which states like Kerala, which are above the national average in various indices, are also benefited. `We must not punish those who have done well and we must help them`.

He said of the 90 districts identified in the country for providing special infrastructure development for minorities, as per the recommendations of the Sachar committee only one district was from Kerala, which was above national average on various parameters. "Time has come that the strong should become stronger. Only because Kerala is a high achieving state, it does not get more attention,` he said.

Later, speaking at the centenary celebrations of district and sessions court at Kottayam, Khurshid claimed India is in the forefront of delivering quick judgements, especially in fast track courts. "People in India speak English fluently but write it in a spontaneous way, resulting in delivering remarkable judgements through fast track courts," he said, adding English has become part of our family, while China is struggling to catch up with the nation in this regard.

In her presidential address, acting Chief Justice of Kerala High Court Justice Munjula Chellur aid advocates must cooperate with judges to maintain credibility. Supreme Court judge Justice Cyriac Joseph highlighted the difficulties faced by judges in certain cases, which sometimes lead to frustration among the victims. He stressed the need to maintain integrity while delivering judgements and said judges must uphold the dignity and prestige of the institution of law during moral crisis.