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Katju favours strong Lokpal, but not in present form

Delhi,Politics, Sat, 31 Mar 2012 IANS

New Delhi, March 31 (IANS) The demand for a stronger anti-graft Lokpal legislation found a supporter in Press Council of India chairman Justice Markandey Katju, who Saturday urged parliament to send the bill back to the standing committee for considering creation of a workable probe agency against corruption.


He also noted that though social activist Anna Hazare was an honest person, his ideas were not scientific.


Katju, however, warned that the present legislation could create a parallel bureaucracy that could emerge as a "Frankenstein" to increase graft in the country two or three times the present levels.


In a statement here, Katju contended that creation of the Lokpal creation and its implications had not been rationally thought out.


"Some people thought that all problems of corruption will be solved by shouting 'Bharat Mata Ki Jai' or 'Inquilaab Zindadbad' from Jantar Mantar or Ram Lila Ground," he said.


The retired Supreme Court judge also noted that be it the Anna Hazare's Jan Lokpal or the government drafted one, the legislation provided for supervision of over 55 lakh employees of the government from the prime minister to a peon.


"Surely one person cannot enquire into the lakhs of complaints which are bound to pour in. It will require thousands of Lokpals, may be 50,000 of them to do this," he said, noting that these persons too would be paid salaries and other facilities such as houses, offices and subordinate staff members.


"And then where is the guarantee that these will not themselves become corrupt? In fact considering the low level of morality prevailing in India, we can be fairly certain that a large number of them will become blackmailers," Katju said.


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