M.K. Gupta

 After the surface of so many scandals including in the Common Wealth Games, Adarsh Society scam and 2-G spectrum, it is the time to visit the effectiveness of the anti corruption laws and the powers and working of the agencies formed to curb corruption.
          Every govt department has its own Vigilance Department wherein the staff and officers of the same Departments join on transfer.  They are expected to take action against their past colleagues or the officers under they will have to work in future after their transfer from the Vigilance Deptt. to the other Departments under them.  In some Departments, the officer who is looking after other work is nominated as Vigilance Officer and how one can expect from him that he will take action against his boss or himself.  It has also been experienced that sometimes, the most corrupt officers are transferred to the Vigilance Departments and the first priority of such officers remain to close the pending inquiries against themselves.
          It is a toothless tiger as does not have any power to prosecute the officers against whom charges of corruption have been levelled.  CVC can only recommend action to the Govt.   Every body knows about the fact of acceptance of numbers of such recommendations.  CVC has no right to take action against the politicians.  Understandly, many recommendations for filing the cases are pending with the government. 
There is no need to comment about this after so many observations from the Supreme and Lower Courts and the latest one in the case of 2-G spectrum.  In this case, the Apex Court asked the CBI, “The nature of the complaint is serious, how long will it take to complete the probe, 10 years”.  People allege that CBI goes according to the wishes of the government at the Centre.
Some of the members of the Committee formed to give teeth to this Act are Shri Ajar Singh, Shri Lalu Prasad Yadav and Shri Ram Vilas Paswan.  There is no need of any comment about this Committee after mentioning the aforesaid names.
The Committee does not have power to force any officer to produce some document or cannot force to any officer to give evidence before the Committee.  Yesterday, on 14.11.10, Baba Ram Dev, Kiran Bedi, Swami Agnivesh, Arvind Kejriwal and others submitted 750-page representation comparing the proof of irregularity.  The delegation has said if no action is taken with a week, it will go to the Court.  After this ultimatum, CBI has conducted raids on games related officials on 15th and arrested two close aides of Mr. Suresh Kalmadi.  
The action of the Govt. is praise-worthy and it seems that the first priority of Mr. Kepi Sibal’s, new Telecom Minister would be to undo any mischief that Mr Raja would have attempted as minister.  Raja is no more Raja for the Telecom Department. 
Lok Pal bill is pending before the Parliament for the last four decades and the bill has been referred for finalization and for a unanimous opinion to different Committees during this period. It has been learnt that this bill be put before the Parliament in December for discussion.  The biggest lucana of this bill is that the action can only be taken against any politicians but not against any officers under the provisions of the bill.  There can be no or rare instances of corruption wherein the politicians can alone indulge in corrupt practice without any support from the bureaucracy.  The Lok Pal will be unable to take action in the alleged cases of corruption wherein the charges against the politicians and the bureaucrats are are made.