Health Care

Rajasthan imposes restrictions on investigation of public servants

Rajasthan imposes restrictions on investigation of public servants”

The Rajasthan government's move to amend a law on probing public servants has met with large-scale criticism, with politicians and rights bodies terming it as unconstitutional and a move to shield corruption.

The Vasundhara Raje government had passed an ordinance which seeks to protect both serving and former judges, magistrates and public servants in Rajasthan from being investigated for on-duty action without its prior sanction. Now the government wants to make it a law and has introduced the The Code of Criminal Procedure (Rajasthan Amendment) Bill in its assembly.

Slamming the Ordinance protecting government officials from media probe Pilot said, "I am absolutely shocked by how the state government is trying to institutionalise corruption".

Finally, if this ordinance is allowed to go unchallenged in Rajasthan, if there's no opposition from civil society, media, judiciary particularly the Supreme Court, then it wouldn't be long when other states too would come out with their own ordinances and immune themselves from any scrutiny whatsoever. If the state government does not get back to the court with its approval within six months, it will be deemed to have given its sanction. She said that under this new ordinance, corruption will prevail and even the media will not be able to do anything.

"Amendments in the existing law are wholly unjust".

Vyas said the present amendments will lead the state towards "authoritarianism and autocracy".

Further, Magistrates are similarly prevented from using their power to take cognizance under Section 190 of the CrPC, without prior sanction. Besides, no investigation can be conducted by any probe agency against the persons specified without there being any prosecution sanction.

According to the ordinance, no public servant during the tenure of his job is liable for questioning for the decision taken during its duty except under the code of criminal procedure 197 K. The issued ordinance also states that no FIR can be lodged against any public servant, nor the police are allowed to file any FIR.

"Provided also that no one shall print or publish or publicize in any manner the name, address, photographs, family details, or any other particulars which may lead to disclosure of identity of a Judge or Magistrate or a public servant against whom any proceedings under this section is pending, until the sanction as aforesaid has been or deemed to have been issued".

Violators can be imprisoned for two years.

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