New Law To Shield Public Servants From Probe In Rajasthan

Vastavam web: In a controversial move, the Vasundhara Raje government in Rajasthan has barred courts from taking up private complaints against public servants including lawmakers, ministers and officials without the government’s concurrence and made it a crime for the media to name the accused till the government decides that the public servant concerned can be investigated. The restriction will apply to cases where the allegation can be linked to a public servant’s official work. It will apply to serving as well as former public servants. The Rajasthan government had made the changes to the criminal procedure code by an executive order, or ordinance, on 7 September last month.

On Monday, the ordinance is expected to come up for approval of the state assembly, where the BJP has 162 of the 200 seats. It is not clear if the changes will impact the power of the police to register cases against public servants as well. But if the police does not act on a complaint, say against a minister or lawmaker accused of corruption, a private citizen has the right to go to the local court to seek orders for a probe. Now, before the court gets to decide if the complaint merits a probe, the law says the government will take get six months to decide if the court should hear the complaint at all.