Focus: GS-II Governance, Prelims
Why in news?
Two weeks after a high-power committee (HPC), chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, selected the new Chief Vigilance Commissioner (CVC) and the Chief Information Commissioner (CIC), the Centre is yet to officially notify the appointments.
Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) — the nodal Ministry that handles government postings.
- Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) is an apex Indian governmental body created in 1964 to address governmental corruption.
- In 2003, the Parliament enacted a law conferring statutory status on the CVC.
- It has the status of an autonomous body, free of control from any executive authority, charged with monitoring all vigilance activity under the Central Government of India, advising various authorities in central Government organizations in planning, executing, reviewing and reforming their vigilance work.
- The CVC was set up by the Government in February, 1964 on the recommendations of the Committee on Prevention of Corruption, headed by Shri K. Santhanam- The parliament enacted the CVC Act 2003 and set up the CVC.
- Hence, the CVC is a Statutory Body.
Functions of CVC
- The CVC receives complaints on corruption or misuse of office and to recommend appropriate action. Following institutions, bodies, or a person can approach to CVC:
- Central government
- Whistle blowers
- It is not an investigating agency. The CVC either gets the investigation done through the CBI or through chief vigilance officers (CVO) in government offices.
- It is empowered to inquire into offences alleged to have been committed under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 by certain categories of public servants.
- Its annual report gives the details of the work done by the commission and points to systemic failures which lead to corruption in government departments. Improvements and preventive measures are also suggested in the report.
- The Central Information Commission has been constituted with effect from 12-10-2005 under the Right to Information Act, 2005.
- Hence, CIC is a Statutory Body.
- The jurisdiction of the Commission extends over all Central Public Authorities.
- It was constituted to act upon complaints from those individuals who have not been able to submit information requests to a Central Public Information Officer or State Public Information Officer due to either the officer not have been appointed, or because the respective Central Assistant Public Information Officer or State Assistant Public Information Officer refused to receive the application for information under the Right to Information Act.
Functions of CIC
- Order enquiry into any matter on reasonable grounds only.
- Secure compliance of its decisions from any public authority.
- Receive and inquire into a complaint from any person:
- Who has not received any response to his request for information within a specified time
- Who deems the information given to him/her incomplete, false or misleading, and any other matter related to securing the information
- Who has been unable to submit a request for information due to the non-appointment of an officer
- Who considers the fees so charged unreasonable
- Who was refused the information requested
- The commission has the power to examine any record under the control of the public authority. All such records have to be given to the Commission during examination and nothing shall be withheld.
- During inquiries, the CIC has the powers of a civil court, such as the powers to:
- Summon and enforce the attendance of persons, and compel them to give oral or written evidence on oath and produce documents or things
- Require the discovery and inspection of documents
- Receive evidence on affidavit
- Requisition public records or copies from any office or court
- Issue summons for the examination of documents or witnesses
- Any other matter that may be prescribed
- The CIC also submits an annual report to the GOI on the implementations of the provisions of the Act. This report is then placed before both the Houses of Parliament.