U'khand govt out to stall Lokayukta Act: Khanduri

Bahuguna wants corruption to flourish in state, says former CM

Accusing the Uttarakhand government of shying away from implementation of the Lokayukta Act, former Chief Minister B C Khanduri on Tuesday said the Bahuguna government was out to “stall” the Act as it wanted the “corruption industry” in the state to flourish.

Taking exception to Bahuguna citing “constitutional discrepancies” in the Act, Khanduri said it is an excuse to prevent the anti-corruption watchdog from coming into existence in Uttarakhand.

“Terming the provisions of the Act unconstitutional is an insult to the President. It is a ploy to stall the act so that corruption, which has assumed the proportions of an industry in the state, could grow unbridled,” said Khanduri.

Insult to President

The Bill passed unanimously by the Uttarakhand Assembly in November 2011 was first scrutinised by the union home ministry and then was approved by the President, who chose not to make any changes in it, he said.

“How can the government talk of constitutional discrepancies in the Act despite it going through an elaborate process of scrutiny by legal and constitutional experts at the disposal of the home ministry and the President?” said Khanduri.
Not suitable

It did not behove of a former judge like Bahuguna to see “unconstitutionalities” in an Act that has been approved by the President.

Khanduri, during whose tenure in office the Bill was unanimously passed by the state Assembly, said the state government’s reluctance to implement the act only confirms the general perception that it is “steeped in corruption” and does not want the anti-corruption instrument to come into being.

No room for change

Citing “unconstitutionalities” in the Act, Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna had recently said it was passed by the previous BJP government in a hurry and there was room for amendments in it.

He said the Act will come up for discussion at the next meeting of the state cabinet on November 7 when it will be decided whether or not to go ahead with its implementation.

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