Statutory bodies

Mains Marks Booster     29th July 2023        
output themes


Statutory Bodies are non-constitutional bodies that are established by an act passed by the Parliament or the state legislatures. Statutory bodies do not have any definition mentioned in the Constitution. It is a self-governing body.

Types of Statutory Bodies in India

types statutory

Major Statutory Bodies in News:

Lokpal and Lokayukta:


It is a known fact that corruption is a major problem, which endangers the stability and security of the nation; threatens socio-economic and political development; and undermines the values of democracy and morality. 

AnnaHazare started a hunger strike on 5 April 2011 to exert pressure on the Indian government to enact a stringent anti-corruption law, The Lokpal Bill, 2011 as envisaged in the Jan Lokpal Bill, for the institution of an ombudsman with the power to deal with corruption in public places. The fast led to nationwide protests in support.

About Lokpal and Lokayuktas

  • Lokayukta is an anti-corruption ombudsman organization in the state of India. 
  • In this context, the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 paved the way for the establishment of the institution of Lokpal at the center; and Lokayuktas at the state levels to inquire into allegations of corruption against public functionaries, and for related matters.
  • The Lokpal is an investigative body headed by the incumbent Chief Justice of India or a retired judge. It has eight members, four of whom are judicial members.
  • The Lokpal has jurisdiction to inquire into allegations of corruption against the Prime Minister, Ministers, Members of Parliament, Group A, B, C and D officers and officials of the central government.
  • Section 14 of the Lokpal Act, which has now been amended, said that if the Lokayukta is satisfied on the complaint against the public servant being substantiated that he should not continue to hold the post held by him, he shall make a declaration to that effect in his report to the competent authority who shall accept it and act upon it.
  • However, an investigative body does not have the legal authority to direct the public servant to resign his post on the basis of its findings. It can only submit its findings to the competent authority or, as is provided in the Lokpal Act, file a case in the special court.

Mandate of Lokpal and Lokayukta

mandate of lokpal

Composition and appointment:

  • The Lokpal would be appointed by the president after consultation with the chief justice of India, the Speaker of Lok Sabha and the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.
  • The Lokpal will have a chairperson and up to eight members, half of whom will be judges. The Lokpal must have 50% members who are women, minorities, SC/ST/OBC, and/or SC/ST.
  • Lokayuktas are appointed by the Governor of respected states through nomination by its Chief Minister.

Functions and Powers

  • Power of Search and seizure
  • Power of civil court in certain cases
  • Power to utilise services of officers of the State Government
  • Power regarding confirmation of attachment of assets 
  • Power related to confiscation of assets, proceeds, receipts, and benefits arising or procured by means of corruption, in special circumstances
  • Power to give directions to prevent the destruction of records during the preliminary inquiry

Critical Examination of Lokpal:

  • Only three anti-corruption complaints were fully investigated, according to information provided by the Lokpal’s office to a parliamentary panel.
  • Around 68% of corruption complaints against public functionaries that landed with the Lokpal of India were “disposed off” without any action in the past four years.
  • Nearly 90% of complaints were not “in the prescribed format”.
  • According to data provided by the Lokpal office to a parliamentary panel on the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), since 2019-20, the anti-corruption body received 8,703 complaints, out of which 5,981 complaints were disposed of.
  • “The Committee recommends Lokpal not to reject genuine complaints merely on the technical ground that the complaint is not in the prescribed format.

Issues and challenges:

issue and challenges

  • Delayed appointment: SC requested a search committee for suggesting names for first Lokpal.
  • Currently, the Lokpal has a vacancy of two judicial members. 
  • Complicated investigation process: On a complaint filed against a Union Minister or a Member of Parliament, the rules state that it has to be decided, at the admission stage, by a bench consisting of not less than three members of the Lokpal.
  • Lokpal cannot take Suo mot action.
  • Whistle-blowers were not given any specific immunity: According to the complaint form, all complainants must submit an affidavit on non-judicial stamp paper that states, "making any false and frivolous or vexatious complaint is punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year and with fine which may extend to one lakh rupees".
  • Lokpal fails to give prosecution sanction to anyone in nearly three years. The Lokpal has received 4,244 corruption complaints between April 2021 and January 31, 2022, a jump of over 80% from 2020-21.
  • A complaint must be resolved by the Lokpal within 30 days.
  • Most of the cases filed in the Lokpal were disposed of as they were not coming under its purview or the jurisdiction.

Way Forward:

  • Autonomy to Lokpal: Both Lokpal and Lokayukta must be legally, financially, and administratively independent.
  • Appointments for Lokpal and Lokayukta must be made in a transparent manner to reduce the possibility of the wrong types of persons being selected.
  • Timely appointment and keeping vacancy zero for effective functioning.


Lokayukta and Lokpal are becoming more popular. Due to massive government expansion and corruption. Corruption hurts economic growth and national security. Thus, more transparency and probity in public affairs were suggested. At this juncture when India is heading the G20 Anti-Corruption Working group, Lokpal should rise to the occasion and make every effort to strengthen the anti-corruption landscape in the country.

output themes