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Powers of the Lokpal ( Section 25, 26, 27 and 28 of the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 )

POWER OF SUPERVISION : The lokpalshall havethe powers of superintendence and can give directions to the Delhi Special Police Establishment in respect to the matters referred  to the Delhi Special Police Establishment by the lokapl for the preliminary inquiry or investigation. However the lokpal shall not exercise his powers of superintendence and direction in a manner that requires any agency to dipose of or invetigate the case in a certain manner. A statement shall besent by the Central Vigilance Commssion to the Lokpal on the receipt of which the lokpal may issue guidelines regarding the diposal of cases. A case shall not be transferred by any officer of the Delhi Special Police Establishment without the prior notice of the lokapl. The Delhi Special Police Establishment can appoint a panel of advocates other than the government advocates for conducting any case referred to it by the lokpal. Such funds as are erquired for the effective investigation of a case by the Delhi Special Police Establishment may be made availabke by the central government and the director of the Delhi Special Police Establishment shall be responsible for such exependiture.

POWERS OF SEARCH AND SEIZURE : the lokpal ay use his power of search and seizure by authorising any agency to whom the investigation hasbeen assigned to search and seize the required documents if he has grounds to believe that the document could be useful for investigation. If the lokapl has reason to believe that such document culd used as an eveidence for the case then he may direc the authorisedofficer to retain the custody of the document till the completion of such investigation. After retaining the copies of such documnets which are duly authenticates, the lokpal or his authorities officers mustreturn the original documents.

POWER EQUIVALENT TO THAT OF A CIVIL COURT : under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 the Inquiry Wing of the lokpal shall have the powers similar to that of a civil court in the following cases :

  • to summon and enforce the atendance of any person and to examine him on oath
  • in matters that require the discovery and production of any document
  • to receive evidence on affidavits
  • to requisitio any public record or its copy from any office or court
  • toissue commissions for the examination of witnesses or documents

The commission of such witness shallonly be allowed where the lokpal thinks that the witness is not in a position to attend the proceedings of a case before the lokpal. Within the ambit of section 193 of the Indian Penal Code, the proceedings before the lokpal shall be deemed to be a judicial proceeding.

POWER TO UTILISE SERVICES OF OFFICERS OF CENTRAL OR STSTE GOVERNMENT : the services of any officer or organistaion or any investigation agency of the central goverment or any state government maybe utilised by the lokpal for the purpose of investigation or preliminay inquiry. The officer or organisatio or agency, the services of which are being utiised may, subject to the superintendence and directiions of the lokpal -

  1. summon and enforce the attendance of any person and examine him.
  2. requirethe discovery and production of any document
  3. requisition any public record or copy thereof from any office

Such officer or organisatio or agency may investigate into any matter related to the preliminary inquiry or investigation. Thereaftera report needs to be submitted to the lokpal within a period of time as maybe specified by it o this behalf.

  • supervisional powers of the lokpal
  • powers of the lokpal that have a status similar to that of civil courts
  • power of the lokpal to utilise the services of officers of the Central and State governments

BY : Mekhla Chakraborty

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