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Why PM should not be under purview of LOKPAL

This editorial which i found on indian express articulated it very well taking cue from wht Jayalalithaa has said


Jayalalithaa has articulated what no one else in politics has managed to do so far — explain precisely and firmly why the Lokpal bill’s proposals are untenable. The prime minister cannot be under the Lokpal, the Tamil Nadu chief minister said in an interview with television channel Times Now, because it could seriously destabilise his position — even if no charges stick, it would be a blow to his authority, particularly in times of round-the-clock news coverage where any slander would be amplified and repeated. Any foreign force with an agenda could seek to implicate the PM, and leave his office preoccupied with responding to frivolous or motivated accusations rather than concentrating on their own critical duties. The PM, she pointed out, is answerable to the CBI under the Prevention of Corruption Act anyway, and that the Lokpal would end up being a parallel government of sorts if it were granted such large powers. Constitutional experts like Fali Nariman have also objected to the impropriety of having a Lokpal who will be, de facto, bigger than the PM — emphasising that the PM can be removed only if Parliament resolves so.
Though two other chief ministers, Parkash Singh Badal and Sheila Dikshit, have voiced objections too, Jayalalithaa presented the most articulate case. “Nothing should erode or undermine the prime minister’s authority,” she said, something the Congress has still not managed to say so simply and unequivocally, despite its many huddles and meetings over the issue. When confronted with the question of whether the PM must account to the Lokpal, the Congress had stalled for days, various members said yes and no while others rejected the binary altogether, it tried to seek other parties’ views — in other words, it looked cornered and confused.
Which is why Jayalalithaa’s clarity over a point of principle must be commended — she stressed that, for her, it was about defending the institution rather than the individual now occupying the post of PM. This was patently a display of sound sense and federal fairplay, and it is noteworthy. Just as the Centre is duty-bound to not encroach on a state’s powers, the states must be committed to preserving the strength of our national institutions. Her claim that she had matured over the years, and was now looking forward to a more productive exchange with the Centre for her state as well as the nation, seemed to be borne out by her stand. And now that Jayalalithaa has cut through the muddle, perhaps other political parties will follow her lead and affirm, on principle, the inviolability of the prime minister’s position.

Comments

  1. sir when d pm can be under ordinary law of land including the prevention of corruption act then why to exclude him. there can be a mechanism that false and vexatious complaints are rejected at the preliminary level. also he can be excluded for his decisions on national security. in the draft judicial standard and accountability bill there when a complaint is filed against a judge then he is not barred from delivering judgements. so why d pm has to bother if any complaint is filed against him. a person is innocent until proven guilty.

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  2. Our constitution makers provided us with parliamentary system of govt and making PM under lokpal which is supposed to be independent body will result in undermining the authority of PM and will be against the spirit of parliamentary system of govt . this may result in parallel govt being run by LOKPAL . PM's office is already loaded by huge amount of work...handling complaint filed against him will increase burden....

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  3. Furthur the belief of common man on PM is very important ....probing charges against him while in office may create unwanted situations. At least we shld trust PM in parliamentary democracy or else we need to overhaul our constitution and make it bureaucratic type of govt.....

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  4. i fully agree with you that a parallel government should not be set up. but sir can't lokpal be an autonomous institution like ECI. And moreover option of judicial review is always there to see that no institution becomes rogue.And various earlier versions of lokpal have said that prime minister should be there including the previous draft prepared last year by govt. i think our constitution provides for various checks and balances to ensure that no organ of govt exceeds its jurisdiction.

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  5. 1) P.M. will not b working "under" the lokpal.. institution of lokpal ll have the limited area to investigate the corruption charges only. there is no issue of "undermining" the parliamentry system in the first place !!
    If pmo is loaded with pending work, simply enhance the work force rather putting hurdle in the way of an anti-corruption body like lokpal.

    2) notion of "parallel govt" is misleading. in tht sense, supreme court is also a parallel govt !!!

    3)belief of comman man in pm is necessary... okie.
    till now no lokpal nd consequently superb belief in pm..right, now what the good it has served which will be lost after this supposed shaky belief in pm caused by an honest lokpal !!!
    PM is not a god figure in democracy tht we shoud be worried this much. He is first among equals as mentioned by Vallabh bhai patel.

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  6. The position of pm is just inter pares i.e. First among equals in the council of ministers. If the other ministers are covered by lokpal then why leave pm.

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  7. PM is not just first among equals...his position is much more than...he is keystone of cabinet arch...a moon among lesser stars, a sun round which other planets revolve..

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