Naveen differs with Lokpal report

Bhubaneswar: The Prime Minister must be included in the ambit of the much talked about Lokpal. The ruling Biju Janata Dal has mentioned in its dissenting note in the Lokpal Bill report tabled in the Parliament. The report introduced by the Parliamentary Standing Committee included 16 dissenting notes. The BJD differed with the report on several accounts.

Strongly arguing for the inclusion of the Prime Minister in the Lokpal ambit, the BJD said that the Constitution of India guaranteed safeguards against probe only to the Prerident of India and not the Prime Minister. While suggesting that departments like defence, space and atomic energy should be kept out considering national security, the BJD proposed that for conducting probe against any of the Prime Minister`s action at least three fourth members of the Lokpal committee must sanction the investigation permission.

The BJD also argued not to include in the first phase the Group-C cadre officers since they hardly played any role in decision making. However, the BJD said, the Group-C category of officers could be covered later if only the Lokpal wished so. The BJD felt that it would become an onerous task for the Lokpal secretariat with just 35 thousand employees to deal with 60 lakh government employees starting from the Group-C to the Group-B and Group-A officers. BJD however argued that police officers from sub-inspector level and junior engibees must be covered by the Lokpal.

The BJD also has favoured to free the Central Bureau of Investigation(CBI) from government control to stop its abuse by the ruling dispensation at the Centre. The BJD also said that as the investigating agency of the Lokpal, the CBI should also be free from government control.

The BJD however welcomed the proposal of the Standing Committee to make special constitutional provisions for the Citizens` Charter. The BJD feared that the proposed Grievance Redressal Bill could hardly meet public expectations and instead hence has suggested some amendments in the proposal to make it more effective.

Pointing out several loopholes in the proposed Whistle Blower`s Bill, the BJD has suggested that the bill should be made in such a way as to provide full proof security to the whistle-blower.