Panaji: After diluting the powers of Goa Lokayukta, the Government now wants me to give consent to appointment of New Lokayukta. I demand that Government must first empower the new Lokayukta with Authority and Powers to Act against illegalities and complaints stated Leader of Opposition Digambar Kamat.
Referring to the letter sent to him by the Chief Minister Dr. Pramod Sawant, dated 5th March 2021, Leader of Opposition Digambar Kamat has said that he will write to the Chief Minister to first empower the Goa Lokayukta with all necessary powers to handle cases of illegalities and corruption.
The position of Lokayukta is not a Ceremonial Post and it is the duty of the Government to ensure that the Institution of Lokayukta is provided with proper staff and equipped with full powers to act stated Digambar Kamat.
The Lokayukta Amendment Bill passed by the BJP Government in the recently concluded Assembly Session was opposed by the entire Opossition by highlighting the fact that the amendmant bill sought to dilute the powers of Lokayukt in such a way that the Institution of Lokayukt would be reduced to a ceremonial Institution claimed Digambar Kamat.
I had in particular vehemently argued that the Institution of Lokayukta should be so strengthened that the menace of corruption at all levels would be curbed in a substancial manner. The Government chose to ignore the well placed bonafide objections raised by me and my colleagues in the Opposition so much so that the end result is the creation of a farcical institution of Lokayukta stated Digambar Kamat.
I want to remind the Government that during my tenure as the Chief Minister of Goa, I had requested the then Law Commission of Goa to prepare a draft Lokayukta Bill for approval by the Legislative Assembly. The Law Commission responded to my request through their report No 15 dated 19/ 09/2011 and had proposed strong and effective powers to the Institution of Goa Lokayukta. The Government must refer to the said Law Commission Report and act on its recommendation demanded Digambar Kamat.
I will take a conscious decision while responding to the Chief Ministers letter. I am committed to protect the interest of Goa and Goans and will always act to uphold the sentiments and emotions of the People of Goa.