Govt Passes Prevention Of Corruption Bill: Now Permission Needed To Investigate Any Public Servant

The Logical Indian India

July 26th, 2018 / 7:18 PM

Anti Corruption Bill

Representational Image: India.com

The Prevention of Corruption Act (Amendment) Bill, 2018 was passed by the Parliament on July 24. Rajya Sabha had passed the bill on July 19. The amendment to the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 was first floated in 2013 by the Congress-led government at the Centre.

The amendments seek to bring in major changes.


Bribe-givers will also be punished

As per the amendment, not only the bribe-taker, but the bribe-giver will also be punished. Even the punishment has been enhanced to three years in jail, extendable to seven years with fine. Earlier the minimum punishment was six months, with an extension of up to three years. For repeat offenders, the minimum punishment would be of five years, extendable up to ten years with fine. 

In cases of coercive bribery, the bribe-giver will be protected as long as the victim comes forward within seven days. Coercive bribery refers to cases wherein the person is forced to pay bribe, and in extreme cases, even physical and psychological harm is inflicted.


Prior approval before investigation initiated against any government servant

Under this prior permission has to be sought before initiating any investigation against a public servant. The Bill extends such protection to retired public officials if they were in office at the time of the alleged offence.


Criminal misconduct redefined

Under the amendment, criminal misconduct will cover misappropriation of property and the possession of disproportionate assets. Earlier, the act defined criminal misconduct by public servant if he habitually takes a bribe, or fraudulently misappropriates property.


Amendments face criticism

Many have criticised the amendments saying that these dilute the act. The fact that in cases of coercive bribery if the bribe-giver complains after seven days, he/she is liable to be prosecuted. The issue has also been highlighted by former Central Information Commissioner is a tweet.

One of the most controversial parts of the bill is that the investigating agencies would have to take prior permission from appropriate authorities while pursuing cases against all public servants including those who have retired. This is deemed to be extremely problematic as there are chances of defaulting public servant from escaping scot-free.

Also, the new definition of criminal misconduct narrows definitions and penalties for a range of offences and outlines powers and procedures for seizing the property of public servants accused of corruption. According to a note by think tank PRS Legislative Research, it now requires that the intention to acquire assets disproportionate to income also be proved, in addition to possession of such assets.  As per the act criminal misconduct also included the use of illegal means, abuse of position or disregard of public interest.

Also Read:


Contributors

Edited by : Abhinav Joshi

Share your thoughts..

Related Stories

Anti Trafficking Bill

Anti Trafficking Warrior Sunitha Krishnan’s Opinion On The Trafficking Of Persons (Prevention, Protection & Rehabilitation) Bill

In A Step To Curb Superstitious Practices, Karnataka Govt. Passes Anti-Superstition Bill

Rajasthan OBC Quota

Rajasthan Passes Bill Increasing OBC Quota To 26%, Now Reservation In The State Stands At 54%

Rajasthan OBC Quota

Rajasthan Passes Bill Increasing OBC Quota To 26%, Now Reservation In The State Stands At 54%

Rajasthan Ordinance

Rajasthan’s New Ordinance Bans Media From Naming Public Servant In Reports Without Prior Permission

anti-conversion bill

Jharkhand Govt Passes Anti-Conversion Bill And Uses A Distorted Quote By Mahatma Gandhi To Trigger Hate

Latest on The Logical Indian

Awareness

1.4 Lakh Posts Lying Vacant, Staff Crunched Indian Railways Sees 31 Train Derailments This Year

News

Canada Legalises Recreational Marijuana, Adults Allowed To Buy From Licensed Producers & Retailers

My Social Responsibility

Once Bitten Twice Shot At, This Former Journalist Set A World Record By Saving 17,000+ Snakes

Fact Check

Fact Check: Do 50 Crore Indian Mobile Subscribers Face Risk Of Deactivation Over Aadhaar eKYC?

Awareness

Fact Checking Government Claims On Scholarship To Persons With Disability

News

Amidst The #MeToo Movement, Malayalam Film Industry Accused Of Being Unjust Towards Survivors

x

Stories that deserve attention, delivered to your inbox!

Handpicked, newsworthy stories which deserve the attention of a rational generation.