Naidu wants review of rules related to admission of complaints against MPs
The Rajya Sabha secretariat has requested the ethic committee chairman Prabhat Jha, who is also a Bharatiya Janata Party MP, to re-examine the present rules regarding admission of complaints against MPsUpdated: Jan 05, 2020 06:57 IST
Rajya Sabha chairman M Venkaiah Naidu wants review of the rules related to the admission of complaints in the ethics committee of the Upper House after 22 complaints against 19 members were rejected as they were filed without following prescribed procedures, officials said.
The Rajya Sabha secretariat has requested the ethic committee chairman Prabhat Jha, who is also a Bharatiya Janata Party MP, to re-examine the present rules regarding admission of complaints against MPs. The secretariat has also been told by Naidu to create awareness about functioning of the panel so that complaints don’t land up in wrong places.
Naidu’s direction came after a review of the functioning of the ethics committee last week. During the meeting, it came to his notice that 22 complaints against 19 members of Rajya Sabha in the last four years had to be returned without examination, the officials said.
This was done since complaints were not made in accordance with the prescribed procedure, the officials said.
The Rajya Sabha ethics committee oversees the conduct of members and examines complaints of unethical conduct to enable effective functioning of the House. The complaints against 19 Rajya Sabha members of eight major parties from both the ruling and opposition benches, besides two independent members, were not taken up for preliminary examination as they were not directly addressed to authorities as mentioned under Rule 295, the officials said.
Of these 22 complaints, 13 were referred to the RS secretariat by the department of personnel and training, four each by the ministry of home affairs and Lok Sabha secretariat, and one by the ministry of parliamentary affairs, on being addressed to them by the complainants.
The Rajya Sabha secretariat has forwarded a proposal to the ethics committee chairman to re-examine the present rules regarding admission of complaints.
As per Rule 295 of the ‘Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Council of States’, any person can make a complaint of unethical conduct against a member of the House in writing either to the ethics committee or an officer authorized by the committee, officials said.
The officials said the committee can also take up such matters suo moto.
Under Rule 296, ethics committee may take up the complaints for preliminary inquiry, if it is made in proper form. Under Rule 303, the Rajya Sabha chairman may refer any question involving unethical conduct and other misconduct of a member to the committee for examination, investigation and report.
When industrialist Vijay Mallya fled the country after defaulting in bank loans, the ethics committee had decided to recommend his dismissal. Mallya, however, resigned in anticipation of dismissal.