The Lok Sabha on Wednesday cleared amendments to the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013, pertaining to dilution of Section 44 of the Act dealing with disclosure of assets of spouses of public servants and those holding positions on the boards of non-governmental organisations (NGOs). In an unprecedented step, neither the copies of the amendments were circulated to the MPs, nor the Union cabinet had approved them ahead of introduction. Prime Minister Narendra Modi invoked special powers, vested to him to approve the Bill without the Cabinet clearance. The amendments will restrict the declaration only of the assets and liabilities of the public servants only, sparing their spouse and dependent children. The amendments will also seek to do away with this proactive disclosure requirement. The public servants includes the government officials, political functionaries that is the Prime Minister, Ministers and also the Members of Parliament.
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