Hyderabad: The Andhra Pradesh Lokayukta has confirmed that political parties which have not bothered to strengthen the institution are indulging in empty rhetoric on combating corruption, said the Lok Satta Party on Thursday.
In a media statement, Lok Satta Party leaders Katari Srinivasa Rao and Ravi Maruth said the Lokayukta’s observations in response to a letter from Textile Minister Shankar Rao apply to successive governments in the state.
The Lokayukta pointedly asked why the institution had not been strengthened since its constitution in 1983 despite repeated representations. It did not enjoy the powers of the Lokayukta in Karnataka, the Andhra Pradesh Lokayukta said.
The recent developments have exposed the political bankruptcy of traditional parties, said the Lok Satta leaders. In this connection, they referred to politicians in power approaching courts for action against the corrupt since they are helpless, and legislators triggering constitutional crisis since they cannot resolve issues through discussions in legislature.
The Lok Satta reiterated its demand that the Government strengthen the Lokayukta by bringing the Anti Corruption Bureau and Vigilance Commission under its purview, constitute special courts with independent prosecutors to try the corrupt, and hand over swift punishment including property attachment.
They recalled that although Lok Satta Party president and Kukatpally MLA Jayaprakash Narayan had submitted a draft Bill to amend the Prevention of Corruption Act as early as in 2009, the mainstream political parties remained virtually silent.
If they are serious of eradicating corruption, they should fight for constitution of strong anti corruption mechanisms at the national, State and district levels as part of the Lokpal Bill. (INN)