The Rajasthan Assembly on Monday passed the Rajasthan Lokayukta and Up-Lokyuktas (Amendment) Bill to reduce the tenure of the Lokayukta from earlier eight years to five years. The Bill was presented by Energy Minister B.D. Kalla in the House on behalf of Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and was passed by voice vote. Under the amendment in the Bill, which was brought to replace an ordinance issued in March this year, the tenure of the Lokayukta has been reduced to five years from eight years. The previous BJP government had increased the Lokayukta’s tenure to eight years from five years last year. “Recently, the term of office of the Lokayukta was increased from five years to eight years by amending section 5 of the Rajasthan Lokayukta and Up-Lokayuktas Act, 1973. But in most of the States of the country the Lokayukta holds the office for a term of five years. “Moreover, the term of the chairperson under the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 (Central Act No. 1 of 2014) is also five years,” the statement of objects and reasons of the Bill said. “In order to maintain parity with the term of Lokayukta in other States of the country and, chairperson of Lokpal in the Centre, it was decided by the State government that term of five years is adequate for the office of the Lokayukta,” it further said. Heated argumentsDuring the debate on the Bill, heated arguments broke out between Speaker C.P. Joshi and Deputy Leader of Opposition Rajendra Rathore when the latter was asked to be specific on the topic.
Pakistan wicketkeeper Zulqarnain Haider, who fled to London midway through a series against South Africa in the UAE after receiving death threats for refusing to fix matches, on Tuesday announced his retirement from international cricket.Haider told the ‘Geo News’ channel from London that he had taken the decision to retire since there was lot of pressure on him and he was getting threats from the people, who had wanted him to fix matches in the just concluded one-day series against South Africa in the UAE.”My family is also still getting threats. I have decided to retire because there is lot of pressure on me and I can’t take it,” he added.Haider left the team hotel in Dubai yesterday in mysterious circumstances and flew to London with the Pakistan Cricket Board later announcing it would be holding an inquiry into the whole matter.”I will be sending a letter to the PCB to inform them about my decision to retire,” he said.Haider also confirmed that the person who approached him to fix matches had met him outside the team hotel and that he got a feeling that there were others with him.”You will get lot of money if you cooperate with us but if you don’t cooperate with us you wouldn’t remain in the team and there will lot of problems for them.”Asked about reports that he was planning to take political asylum in the United Kingdom, Haider declined to to comment.With PTI inputsadvertisement”I think you should speak to the immigration authorities about this but I have decided nothing as yet.”