PESHAWAR - Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly Monday passed the Whistleblower and Vigilance Commission Bill 2015 to curb corruption in the government departments.

Special Assistant to CM KP on Law, Arif Yousaf presented the bill in the house and was approved with certain amendments.

This new law will enable citizen to identify irregularities and corrupt practices in any government department.

Under the law, a three-member commission comprising of a retired high court judge, and two government grade-20 retired servants having at least 20-year service would be its members.

After getting information of any kind of irregularities and corruption, the commission would have to investigate that matter by nominating an inquiry officer, who would have to submit his report to the commission within 60 days.

Similarly, the commission would have to decide within 30-day on the inquiry report.

Keeping his name secret, the whistleblower would be paid 30 per cent of the recovered amount as a reward for pointing out the corruption, as under the new law any person can identify any kind of corruption and irregularities in any government department about any bureaucrat, official, contractor and others.

However, if the charges were proved false, the accuser would be fined and could face three years imprisonment, says the new law.

Moreover, an official, who is not cooperating with inquiry officer, would be fined from Rs 50,000 to Rs 200,000.

Anybody could contact the commission, if he or she has information along with solid proofs about corruption in any government department.    

Meanwhile, the ANP’s parliamentary leader in the assembly Sardar Hussain Babak said that the new bill would encourage espionage in the government departments.

Despite the fact that a number of departments exist like that of NAB, Ehtesab Commission and Anti-Corruption to curb corruption, but this government is introducing new laws which would certainly develop enmities among people, he said.  

On his turn, CM Pervez Khattak said that the opposition criticism on new bill is justified. However, he added the bill was not passed just to disgrace someone. Actually, it aimed at curbing the menace of corruption in the society.

Similarly, KP Assembly also unanimously approved another bill declaring usury business as unlawful in the province.

Drafted jointly by PPP’s Fakhr-e-Azam Wazir, Jamaat-e-Islami (JI)’s Aizaz Afkari, the bill was moved and passed, under which, there would be a complete ban on doing business of usury.

Anyone found guilty of doing business of usury can face up to five year of jail term and Rs 500, 000 fine.

Usury is the practice of making unethical or immoral monetary loans that unfairly enrich the lender. Originally, usury meant interest of any kind.

The KP Assembly, which met with Speaker Asad Qaiser in the chair, also condemned hoisting of political party flag at the gate of the provincial assembly.

The speaker directed the IG to investigate the issue and submit report in the assembly within a week.

Likewise, KP Police Ordinance 2016 was also presented in the house. Under the new ordinance, instead of chief secretary, the KP police would now be under the control of IG Police having also all administrative and financial powers.