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Bribery In Pvt Sector May Be Made A Criminal Offence

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The Government is considering a proposal to make bribery in private sector a criminal offence through amendments in the Indian Penal Code.

"The IPC does not provide penal provision for bribery in private sector. However, as India is a signatory to the UN Convention Against Corruption, which, inter alia, provides that act of bribery in private sector be criminalised, the Ministry of Home Affairs has a proposal to amend the IPC, 1860 to make bribery in private sector a criminal offence," MoS for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions V Narayanasamy told Lok Sabha in a written reply.

Since, Criminal Law and Criminal procedure fall in the concurrent list of the Seventh Schedule to the Constitution, the Ministry informed that taking a view on the proposal will be subject to receipt of the comments from all the State Governments and Union territories administrations, he said.

"No decision has been taken by the Government to amend existing anti-graft laws to cover private sector and introduce ethics code to check bribing of public officials," the Minister said.

Responding to another question in the Lok Sabha, Narayanasamy said there is no proposal with the Government to make corruption-free public service a fundamental right.

However, the Government has introduced the Right of Citizens for Time Bound Delivery of Goods and Services and Redressal of their Grievances Bill, 2011 in the Lok Sabha which lays down an obligation upon every public authority to publish citizens charter stating therein the time within which specified goods shall be supplied and services be rendered, he said.