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Judicial accountability bill to be moved: Pranab Mukherjee

Posted on Feb 21, 03:15PM | IANS

New Delhi, Feb 21 : President Pranab Mukherjee said Thursday that the government is set to introduce the judicial standards and accountability bill during the budget session of parliament.

He said the move would be part of his government's thrust towards judicial reforms. The government remains committed to ushering in reforms for greater transparency, probity, integrity and accountability in governance, he said.

The president said the government was also considering amendments to the Prevention of Corruption Act to punish the guilty and protect honest public servants more effectively.

Addressing a joint session of parliament at the start of the budget session, the president said the government would endeavour to establish gram nyayalayas (village courts) for ensuring affordable and expeditious justice to the common man as one of its foremost priorities.

"My government attaches priority to the enactment of legislation proposed in the whistle blowers' protection bill, the prevention of bribery of foreign public officials and officials of public international organisations bill, and citizens' right to grievance redressal bill," he said.

The government was committed to the passage of the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Bill, he stressed.

He said the government had taken significant initiatives, including enhanced funding of Rs.4,867 crore in the 12th Five Year Plan, to strengthen legal and judicial infrastructure in the country.

"Over 14,000 district and subordinate courts are being equipped with the tools of information and communication to provide quality citizen-centric services to litigants," he said.