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Administrative Reforms Commission Reports Report 4: Ethics In Governance Roman Saini
Course Structure Lokayukt:a 1. 4th Report- Preface 2. Outline of Fourth Report 3. Recommendations of 4th 6. Lokpal 7. Citizen Initiative to Control the 8. Ombudsman Corruption Ethical Role of Media report 1. Reforms into Institutional 9. Use of Information Technology and Ethical Framework to combat the Corruption 2. Reforms in Civil Services 10 Promoting Competition 3. Ethical Framework for the 11. Proactive vigilance on Judiciary corruption 4. Modification and Enactment of Important Acts/Laws Introducing New Laws 4. Conclusion 5.
Recommendations made in 4th Report 1.Reforms into Institutional and Ethical Framework Reform of Political Funding ; A system for partial state funding should be introduced in order to reduce the scope of illegitimate and unnecessary funding of expenditure for elections. Tightening of Anti-Defection Law The issue of disqualification of members on grounds of defection should be decided by the President/Governor on the advice of the Election Commission.
Disqualification; Section 8 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 needs to be amended to disqualify all persons facing charges related to grave and heinous offences and corruption, Expediting Disposal of Election Petitions Special Election Tribunals should be constituted at the regional level under Article 323B of the Constitution to ensure speedy disposal of election petitions and disputes within a stipulated period of six months. Ethical Framework for Ministers; The Prime Minister or the Chief Minister should be duty bound to ensure the observance of the Code of Ethics and the Code of Conduct by Ministers. Office of Profit ; The Law should be amended to define office of profit. Schemes such as MPLADS and MLALADS should be abolished.
Coalition and Ethics The Constitution should be amended to ensure that if one or more parties in a coalition with a common programme mandated by the electorate either explicitly before the elections or implicitly while forming the government, realign midstream with one or more parties outside the coalition, then Members of that party or parties shall have to seek a fresh mandate from the electorate. Appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner/Commissioners A collegium headed by the Prime Minister with the Speaker of the Lok Sabha, the Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha, the Law Minister and the Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha as members; should make recommendations for the consideration of the President for appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and the Election Commissioners.
Enforcement of ethical norms in Legislatures An Office of 'Ethics Commissioner' may be constituted by each House of Parliament. This Office, functioning under the Speaker/Chairman, would assist the Committee on Ethics in the discharge of its functions, and advise Members, when required, and maintain necessary records. The Code of Ethics, the Code of Conduct and the annual report should be put in the public domain. Members of Parliament and Members of State Legislatures should be declared as 'Public Authorities' under the Right to Information Act, except when they are discharging legislative functions.
2.Reforms in Civil Services Code of Ethics for Civil Servants ; Public Service Values, towards which all public servants should aspire, should be defined and made applicable to all tiers of Government and parastatal organizations. Any transgression of these values should be treated as misconduct, inviting punishment. Conflict of interests should be comprehensively covered in the code of ethics and in the code of conduct for officers. Constitutional Protection to Civil Servants; Article 311 of the Constitution should be repealed. Simultaneously Article 310 of the Constitution should also be Suitable legislation to provide for all necessary terms and conditions of services should be provided under Article 309,
Protecting the Honest Civil Servant Every allegation of corruption received through complaints or from sources cultivated by the investigating agency against a public servant must be examined in depth at the initial stage itself before initiating any enquiry In matters relating to allegations of corruption, open enquiries should not be taken up straight away on the basis of complaints/source information. The evaluation of the results of verification/enquiries should be done in a competent and just manner. Much injustice can occur due to faulty evaluation of the facts and the evidence collected in support of such facts. The supervisory officers in the investigating agencies should ensure that only those public servants are prosecuted against whom the evidence is strong
There should be profiling of officers. The capabilities, professional competence, integrity and reputation of every government servant must be charted out and brought on record. Before proceeding against any government servant, reference should be made to the profile of the government servant concerned. Supervision ; The supervisory role of officers needs to be re-emphasised. It bears reiteration that supervisory officers are primarily responsible for curbing corruption among their subordinates, and they should take all preventive measures for this purpose. In the Annual Performance Report of each officer, there should be a column where the officer should indicate the measures he took to control corruption in his office and among subordinates. The reporting officer should then give his specific comments on this
Ensuring Accessibility and Responsiveness ; Service providers should converge their activities so that all services are delivered at a common point. Such common service points could also be outsourced to an agency, which may then be given the task of pursuing citizens, requests with concerned agencies. Tasks, which are prone to corruption, should be split up into different activities that can be entrusted to different persons. Public interaction should be limited to designated officers. A single window front office' for provision of information and services to the citizens with a file tracking system should be set up in all government departments.