The West Bengal Assembly on Thursday passed Lokayukta (Amendment) Bill, 2018 to keep the Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee out of the purview. The development comes nearly three months after the Supreme Court sought a detailed reply from 12 states and Union Territories including Delhi, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Jammu and Kashmir for not appointing Lokayukta. The apex court also directed respective Chief Secretary of states to file an affidavit in the issue within 2 weeks and apprise court about it.
As per gazette issued by the state government, “Amending Section 8A so as to exclude any investigation of any complaint relating to allegation of corruption against the Chief Minister relating to public order and any investigation of the complaint against a public servant without the approval of the state government.” The controversial move by the state government has attracted sharp criticism from opposition parties, including BJP and CPI(M).
Condemning the move, BJP state chief Dilip Ghosh said that everyone should be included in the Lokayukta.