B C Khanduri criticises U'khand CM Bahuguna for statement on Lokayukta

KhanduriCM was criticised for saying that the anti-corruption legislation is yet to come into force in the state. (PTI)

Former CM B C Khanduri on Saturday took exception to Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna's statement that Uttarakhand will implement a Lokayukta Act based on the anti-corruption law passed by Parliament.

BJP leader Khandhuri, during whose tenure the state assembly passed the Lokayukta Act, criticised Bahuguna for saying that the anti-corruption legislation is yet to come into force in the state. Only the annulment of the existing Act will pave the way for enacting a new law, he said.

"How can the chief minister say the Lokayukta Act is not in force in the state when it has already been given Presidential assent and notified by the state government?" Khanduri told PTI.

Terming as "unconstitutional" Bahuguna's statement that a Lokayukta Act drafted on the lines of the Lokpal bill passed by Parliament will be implemented in the state and not the one passed by the state assembly during the previous BJP government, Khanduri contended that the Bill took immediate effect after it got Presidential assent on September 3.

Noting that there is a constitutional procedure to replace an old act with a new one, he said if the state government has reservations about the Act which is already in force,†it has the powers to annul it after taking the Cabinet into confidence and bringing in a fresh legislation in its place in the state assembly.

Once passed by the state assembly, the Bill is forwarded to the Governor who in turn sends it to the President for his assent, the BJP leader said. He accused the chief minister of not moving at all in that direction.

"It is about 100 days since the Bill got Presidential assent in September this year but the Act has not even been brought up before the Cabinet which is the first step towards its annulment -- an idea the state government seems to be toying with. Bahuguna government is only dragging its feet over the issue," he claimed.

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