The Haryana lokayukta Act, 2002 was approved by the President of India on 6th January 2002 and came into force on 27th January, 2003 by State Government Notification in the official Gazette. On 18th January, 2011 Hon’ble Justice Pritam Pal (Former Judge of Punjab & Haryana High Court) was sworn in by His Excellency the Governor of Haryana, as a new Lokayukta which means a person appointed as a Lokayukta under section 3. Under this Act, only the person, who himself is aggrieved from any public servant, has a right to knock the door of this institution. In case of complaints relating to the allegation of corruption, abuse or misuse of official position against a public servant, any person could file the complaint and in case of complaints related to the personal grievance of person concerned, the aggrieved person would have to file the same. In case the aggrieved person was dead, his legal representative could on his behalf, file such a complaint before the Lokayukta. This also means affirmation of allegation against a public servant who has misused his power to obtain favour or cause undue harm to any other person actuated for personal interest, improper or corrupt motives, guilty of corruption and dishonest, who has disproportionate property, pecuniary resources in his possession, by any member of his family or by some other persons on his behalf. Any person files his complaint to the Lokayukta by writing a letter, enclosure of mandatory affidavit, Non-judicial stamp papers worth Rs. 1000 as fee, complaint being devoid of signature of complaint and other relevant papers of the basis of which complaint is supported. Those who are unable to deposit requisite fee of Rs. 1000 could make a request to the Lokayukta for remission of fee which could be accepted by the Lokayukta at his discretion. Such persons would have to attach with their application necessary documents, such as a copy of BPL category ration card.
A person lodged in custody, jail, or any asylum or any other custodial place, might also submit his complaint to Lokayukta by writing a letter to him. In such case it was the duty of the concerned officer of Police, Jail and asylum to ensure the delivery of such letter to the Lokayukta unopened and without any delay. In case of satisfaction, such latter shall be treated as a complaint made in accordance with the provision of form & affidavit or whichever is required. A person who files a false complaint willfully or maliciously might be sentenced to three years rigorous imprisonment or a fine Rs-10,000 each or both.
The Lokayukta may inquire into any act or conduct of any person other than a public servant in so far as he considers it necessary so to do for the purpose of his enquiry into any allegation of misconduct against a public servant provided that the Lokayukta shall give such a person reasonable opportunity of being heard and to produce evidence in his defence.
The Lokayukta on receipt of a complaint may before proceeding to investigate such complaint or case, make such preliminary inquiry or direct any other person to make such preliminary inquiry as he deems fit for ascertaining whether there exists reasonable ground for conducting the investigation. If on such preliminary inquiry, he finds that there exists no such ground he shall record a finding to that effect and thereupon the matter shall be closed and the complainant shall be informed accordingly. The Lokayukta shall devise his own procedure for conducting inquiry or investigation but in so doing shall ensure that the principles of natural justice are satisfied. The Lokayukta has to complete the inquiry within one year. Every inquiry under the Act shall, unless the Lokayukta for reasons to be recorded in writing determines otherwise, be conducted in camera.
The Lokayukta has the power to summon record of the state government, local authority, corporation, government company, society, university, any college affiliated to or constituent of a university or from any other persons in connection with any inquiry or investigation against public servant undertaken by him. Where in consequence of information in his possession or after such inquiry as he think necessary, the Lokayukta may issue a search warrant and he or any person authorized by him, after inquiry in respect of a complaint the Lokayukta is satisfied that no allegation or grievance has been substantiated, he shall close the case and intimate the competent authority concerned accordingly. The Lokayukta may after receipt of a complaint, issue such interim direction as the case may warrant, so as to avoid grave injustice.
Any Information, obtained by the Lokayukta or members of his staff in the course of, or for the purpose of, any inquiry or investigation under this Act and any evidence recorded or collected in connection with such information shall be treated as confidential and notwithstanding anything contained in the Evidence Act, 1872, no court shall be entitled to compel the Lokayukta or any public servant to give evidence relating to such information or produce the evidence so recorded or collected.
No suit, prosecution or other legal proceedings shall lie against the Lokayukta or against any officer or employee, agency or person acting on his behalf in respect of anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done under this Act. Where the Lokayukta decides to inquire into a complaint against a public servant, he may ascertain from the state government whether any complaint containing substantially similar allegation against the said public servant is under investigation and if so, he may call for the record thereof.
All matters pending before the Lokayukta before the repeal of the Haryana Act No. 21 of 1998 shall be inquired into by the Lokayukta under this Act. To create awareness about the Haryana Lokayukta Act and the rules framed there under Hon’ble Lokayukta Justice Pritam Pal visited ten districts of the state. He also held meeting with all officers of the Districts, Media persons, office Bearers/ members of the Zila Parishads, Block Samities, Local Bodies and Municipal Corporation, office bearers of districts Bar Associations & NGOs to have interaction and share his views with regard to the provisions of Haryana Lokayukta Act, 2002 and also discussed over the implementation procedure of the Act. During the period of last seven months Lokayukta office has received 561 complaints. Out of these complaints Lokayukta has solved 388 and 347 complaints are pending as on 31.08.2011.