Lokpal Current Affairs
Government has constituted eight-member search committee headed by former Supreme Court judge Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai, to recommend names for posts of Lokpal chairperson and members. The selection process of Lokpal is underway as per guidelines of laid down in Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013.
Members of Lokpal Search Committee are
Justice Sakha Ram Singh Yadav, former SBI Chief Arundhati Bhattacharya, retired IAS officer Ranjit Kumar, former Gujarat Police head Lalit K Panwar, former judge of Allahabad High Court Shabbirhusein S Khandwawala; Prasar Bharati chairperson A Surya Prakash and ISRO Head AS Kiran Kumar.
Committee’s Terms of Reference
The search committee will start functioning soon.It will recommend names for Lokpal chairperson and members. It can also consider names other than those recommended by the search committee.
Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013
It was passed in 2013 to constitute statutory body to inquire into allegations of corruption against public functionaries. Under it, the appointments to Lokpal is made by high-level selection committee comprising of Prime Minister, Chief Justice of India, Lok Sabha Speaker, Leader of Opposition Party (LoP) and an eminent jurist chosen by them.
The Lok Sabha passed the Lokpal and Lokayukta (Amendment) Bill, 2016 without discussion.
The bill seeks to amend the Lokpal and Lokayukta Act, 2013 which provides Lokpal (at Centre) and Lokayukta (at States) statutory backing to inquire into allegations of corruption against certain public functionaries and for related matters.
- Enable the leader of the single largest opposition party in the Lok Sabha in the absence of a recognised Leader of Opposition to be a member of the selection committee that would select the ombudsman.
- Amends section 44 of parent Act that deals with provision of furnishing of details of assets and liabilities of public servants within 30 days of joining the government service.
- The amendment has removed the period of 30 days. Now the public servants will make declaration of their assets and liabilities in the form and manner as prescribed by government.
- Gives extension of the time given to public servants and trustees and board members of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) to declare their assets and those of their spouses.
- In this case public servants and trustees and board members of NGOs must be receiving government funds of more than Rs. 1 crore or foreign funding of more than Rs. 10 lakh.