Recommendations of Administrative Reforms Commission

Fourth report of the Second Administrative Reforms Commission on //Ethics in Governance//

7.9 Recommendations:
a. Every allegation of corruption received through complaints or from
sources cultivated by the investigating agency against a public servant
must be examined in depth at the initial stage itself before initiating any
enquiry. Every such allegation must be analyzed to assess whether the
allegation is specific, whether it is credible and whether it is verifiable.
Only when an allegation meets the requirements of these criteria, should
it be recommended for verification, and the verification must be taken
up after obtaining approval of the competent authority. The levels of
competent authorities for authorizing verifications/enquiries must be fixed
in the anti- corruption agencies for different levels of suspect officers.
b. In matters relating to allegations of corruption, open enquiries should
not be taken up straightaway on the basis of complaints/source
information. When verification/secret enquiries are approved, it should
be ensured that secrecy of such verifications is maintained and the
verifications are done in such a manner that neither the suspect officer
nor anybody else comes to know about it. Such secrecy is essential not
only to protect the reputation of innocent and honest officials but also to
ensure the effectiveness of an open criminal investigation. Such secrecy
of verification / enquiry will ensure that in case the allegations are found
to be incorrect, the matter can be closed without anyone having come to
know of it. The Inquiry / Verification Officers should be in a position to
appreciate the sensitivities involved in handling allegations of corruption.
c. The evaluation of the results of verification/enquiries should be done in
a competent and just manner. Much injustice can occur due to faulty
evaluation of the facts and the evidence collected in support of such facts.
Personnel handling this task should not only be competent and honest
but also impartial and imbued with a sense of justice.
d. Whenever an Inquiry Officer requires to consult an expert to understand
technical /complex issues, he can do so, but the essential requirement of
proper application of mind has to take place at every stage to ensure that
no injustice is caused to the honest and the innocent.
e. Capacity building in the anti-corruption agencies should be assured
through training and by associating the required experts during enquiries/
investigations. Capacity building among public servants who are expected
to take commercial / financial decisions should be built through suitable
training programmes.
f. The supervisory officers in the investigating agencies should ensure that
only those public servants are prosecuted against whom the evidence is
strong.g. There should be profiling of officers. The capabilities, professional
competence, integrity and reputation of every government servant must
be charted out and brought on record. Before proceeding against any
government servant, reference should be made to the profile of the
government servant concerned.
h. A special investigation unit should be attached to the proposed Lokpal
(Rashtriya Lokayukta)/State Lokayuktas/Vigilance Commission, to
investigate allegations of corruption against investigative agencies. This
unit should be multi-disciplinary and should also investigate cases of
allegations of harassment against the investigating agency. Similar units
should also be set up in states.