The Prevention of Corruption of Act, 1988 - All you need to know

"If we cannot make India corruption-free, then the vision of making the nation develop by 2020 would remain as a dream." - Dr. A.P.J.Abdul Kalam

INTRODUCTION

Corruption is a worldwide phenomenon.THE Corruption is a dishonest act.It is not only confined politicians or Goverment machinery alone but also it is prevalent in every section of Indian society.The Prevention of Corruption of Act, 1988 is an important legislation to fight with evil of corruption. It is an effective instrument to curb this evil.

 Corruption is a criminal offence, and there is a Act promulgated as 'Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988'. And this act is if a public servant accepts money or gifts over and above their salary, in return for favouring a person in their official capacity is punishable under this Act.The person helping the Public Servant to commit these crimes is also punishable under this Act.This Act is silent on the corruption not being a Public servant.The Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 is a law enacted by the Indian Parliament to prevent and fight corruption by public servants.

OFFENCES AND PENALTIES UNDER THE ACT

The offences and penalties under this Act are as detailed below,


SECTION

OFFENCES

PUNISHMENT

shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall be not less than .... months but which may extend to ......years and shall also be liable to fine

SEC-7

Taking gratification other than legal remuneration in respect of an official act, and if the public servant is found guilty.

six month to five years

SEC-8

Taking gratification in order to influence public servant, by corrupt or illegal means.

six month to five years

SEC-9

Taking gratification, for exercise of personal influence with public servant.

six month to five years

SEC-10

Abetment by public servant of offences defined in Section 8 or 9 under this Act.

six month to five years

SEC-11

Public servant obtaining valuable thing without consideration from person concerned in proceeding or business transacted by such public servant.

six month to five years.

SEC-12

Punishment for abetment of offences defined in Section 7 or 11 under this Act.

six month to five years

SEC-13

Any public servant, who commits criminal misconduct.

one year to seven years

SEC-14

Habitual committing of offence under Section 8, 9 and 12 under this Act

two years to seven years

Sec-15

Punishment for attempt Whoever attempts to commit an offence referred to in clause (c) or clause (d) of sub-section (1) of section 13.

shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and with fine


Sec-16. Matters to be taken into consideration for fixing fine

Where a sentence of fine is imposed, the court while fixing the amount for the same shall consider the amount or the value of the property which the accused has obtained by committing the offence or where the conviction is for an offence referred to in sec. 13(1)(e) under this Act, the pecuniary resource or property for which the accused is unable to account satisfactorily.

CRIMINAL MISCONDUCT

The Prevention of Corruption Act of 1947 created a new offence called Criminal

Misconduct in the discharge of official duty. Section 13 of the said Act defined the various categories of Criminal Misconduct by Public Servants.

A public servant is said to commit the offence of criminal misconduct if he by corrupt or illegal means or by otherwise abusing his position as a Public Servant, obtains for himself or for any other person any valuable thing or pecuniary advantage.

'A Public Servant is said to commit the offence of criminal misconduct-

if he habitually accepts or obtains or agrees to accept or attempts to obtain from any person for himself or for any other person any gratification other than legal remuneration as a motive or reward such as is mentioned in section 7; or

if he habitually accepts or obtains or agrees to accept or attempts to obtain for himself or for any other person, any valuable thing without consideration or for a consideration which he knows to be inadequate from any person whom he knows to have been, or to be, or to be likely to be concerned in any proceeding or business transacted or about to be transacted by him, or having any connection with the official functions of himself or of any public servant to whom he is subordinate, or from any person whom he knows to be interested in or related to the person so concerned; or

if he dishonestly or fraudulently misappropriates or otherwise converts for his own use any property entrusted to him or under his control as a public servant or allows any other person so to do; or

(i) by corrupt or illegal means, obtains for himself or for any other person any valuable thing or pecuniary advantage, or

(ii) by abusing his position as a public servant, obtains for himself or for any other person any valuable thing or pecuniary advantage, or

(iii)While holding office as a public servant obtains for any person any valuable thing or pecuniary advantage without any public interest'.

(e) if he or any person on his behalf, is in possession or has, at any time during the period of his office, been in possession for which the public servant cannot satisfactorily account, of pecuniary resources or property disproportionate to his known sources of income.

The question whether misconduct should be in discharge of official duty was considered by the Supreme Court in Dhaneswar Narain Saxena Vs. Delhi Administration (AIR 1962 Supreme Court 195). In that case, the Accused was an upper division clerk in the office of the Chief Commissioner of Delhi who took money from one Ram Narain for rendering assistance to him in obtaining a licence for his double barrel gun from the office of the Deputy Commissioner, Delhi. The Supreme Court held that it is not necessary that the public servant while misconducting himself, should have done so in the discharge of his duty. It would be anomalous to say that a public servant has misconducted himself in the discharge of his duty, because 'duty' and 'misconduct' go ill together and it would not ordinarily be in the discharge of his duty, but the reverse of it.

Offence under the Act triable by special judge

According to sec-4 of the act

Any offence punishable under this Act.

Any conspiracy to commit or any attempt to commit or any abetment of any of the offences specified under this Act.

Shall be tried by the special Judge for the area within which it was committed,

or, as the case may be, by the special Judge appointed for the case, or where there are more special Judges than one for such area, by such one of them as may be specified in this behalf by the Central Government.

According to sec-3 of the Act

The Central and the State Government is empowered to appoint Special Judges 'who should be or should have been a 'Session Judge or an Additional Session Judge or Assistant Session Judge under the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973' by placing a Notification in the Official Gazette, to try the following offences:

  • Any offence punishable under this Act.
  • Any conspiracy to commit or any attempt to commit or any abetment of any of the offences specified under this Act

 

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