The State Cabinet decided and enacted a new Lokayukta legislation along the lines of the Jan Lokpal Bill that was passed in both Houses of Parliament recently.
The new legislation would empower officials to probe the Chief Minister, Ministers and others for offences falling under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
In the Legislative Council, House Leader S R Patil said the move is aimed at weeding out corruption from public office. Agreeing to Opposition members’ opinion of the Act having several lacunae in dealing with corruption, Patil said the new legislation, with more teeth, will be placed before the House after consulting legal experts and others.
Sources said the bill would be moved in the ongoing Legislature session itself. The new legislation also envisages bringing top-ranking bureaucrats into its ambit.
New Vet Hospitals
The Cabinet also gave administrative approval to set up a super-specialty veterinary hospital in Bangalore and four special veterinary hospitals in the districts of Belgaum, Mysore, Tumkur and Gulbarga.
According to official sources, these hospitals would be constructed by spending over Rs 22 crore, with Rs 8 crore allocated for the super-specialty hospital.
In another major decision, the Cabinet also reportedly cleared several irrigation projects to utilise the State’s share of the Krishna river waters.
This includes the Rs 2,488.87 crore Bagaleshwara lift irrigation project in Bagalkot district, the Rs 1,530 crore Nandawadagi lift project and a Rs 92.82 crore revised estimate for the Bhadra canal remodelling project.
The Cabinet decided to extend the Yashaswini Scheme to 75 lakh members of cooperative societies in urban areas in the State. The beneficiaries have to pay Rs 1,000 for enrolling in the scheme annually.