The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) was set up by the Government in February 1964 on the recommendations of the Committee on Prevention of Corruption, headed by Shri K. Santhanam, to advise and guide Central Government agencies in the field of vigilance. Consequently, through The Central Vigilance Commission Act, 2003, CVC became statutory body
The CVC is a multimember body consisting of a central vigilance commissioner and not more than two vigilance commissioners. They are appointed by the president by warrant under his hand and seal on the recommendation of a three-member committee consisting of the prime minister as its head, the union minister of home affairs and the Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha. They hold office for a term of four years or until they attain the age of sixty-five years, whichever is earlier. After their tenure, they are not eligible for further employment under the Central or a state government.
The president can remove the Central Vigilance Commissioner or any vigilance commissioner from the office under the following circumstances:
- If he is adjudged an insolvent; or
- (a) If he is adjudged an insolvent; or
- (b) If he has been convicted of an offence which (in the opinion of the Central government) involves a moral turpitude; or
- (c) If he engages, during his term of office, in any paid employment outside the duties of his office; or
- (d) If he is (in the opinion of the president), unfit to continue in office by reason of infirmity of mind or body; or
- (e) If he has acquired such financial or other interest as is likely to affect prejudicially his official functions.
In addition to these, the president can also remove the Central Vigilance Commissioner or any vigilance commissioner on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity. However, in these cases, the president has to refer the matter to the Supreme Court for an enquiry. If the Supreme Court, after the enquiry, upholds the cause of removal and advises so, then the president can remove him. He is deemed to be guilty of misbehaviour, if he (a) is concerned or interested in any contract or agreement made by the Central government, or (b) participates in any way in the profit of such contract or agreement or in any benefit or emolument arising therefrom otherwise than as a member and in common with the other members of an incorporated company.
The salary, allowances and other conditions of service of the Central Vigilance Commissioner are similar to those of the Chairman of UPSC and that of the vigilance commissioner are similar to those of a member of UPSC. But they cannot be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.
Functions & Powers of CVC:
- Conduct inquiries into offences alleged to have made under Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 by certain categories of public servants of Central Government, corporations established by or under any Central Act, Government companies, societies and local authorities owned or controlled by the Central Government.
- Exercise superintendence over the vigilance administrations of the various Central Government Ministries, Departments and Organizations of the Central Government.
- Advise various authorities in planning, executing, reviewing and reforming vigilance work of Central Government organisations.
- Receive written complaints for disclosure on any allegation of corruption or misuse of office and recommend appropriate action.
- Exercise superintendence over functioning of Delhi Police Establishment(CBI) regarding investigation of offences under The Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988
- Review the progress of investigations conducted by the Delhi Special Police Establishment into offences committed under the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988
- Review the progress of applications pending with the competent authorities for sanction of prosecution.
- Shall have all the powers of a Civil Court while conducting any inquiry Plan and enforce regular or surprise Inspections to detect the system failures and existence of corruption or malpractices,
- To ensure prompt observance of Conduct Rules relating to integrity of the Officers, like
- The Annual Property Returns Gifts accepted by the officials
- Benami transactions
- Regarding relatives employed in private firms or doing private business etc.
- (Section 20 of Lokpal & Lokayukta Act) Conduct inquiries into complaints referred by Lokpal as per the Lokpal and Lokayukta Act, 2013. Central Vigilance Commission in respect of complaints referred to it after making preliminary enquiry-
- In respect of public servants belonging to Group A and Group B-shall submit its report to the Lokpal.
- In case of public servants belonging to Group C and Group D the Commission shall proceed in accordance with the provisions of the Central Vigilance Commission Act, 2003.
- It shall be the duty of the Commission to present annually to the President a report as to the work done by the Commission within six months of the close of the year under report.
- The Report presented to the President by CVC shall contain a separate part on the functioning of the Delhi Special Police Establishment.
- On receipt of such report, the President shall cause the same to be laid before each House of Parliament.