Bangalore: No Ulterior Motive in Lokayukta Appointment Delay: Suresh Kumar
From Our Special Correspondent
Daijiworld Media Network - Bangalore
Bangalore, Jul 24: Though the State Government has been under attack from the Karnataka High Court and leaders of civil society, including former Lokayukta Justice N Santhosh Hegde, over the delay in the filling up of the vacant post of Lokayukta, the State Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister S Suresh Kumar claimed that there was no ulterior motive behind the delay in appointment of the Lokayukta.
He was replying to Congress deputy leader T B Jayachandra during the zero hour in the State Assembly on Tuesday.
The Minister said the appointment of the new Lokayukata has not been deliberately delayed.
He explained that the State Government has filed an appeal in the Supreme Court seeking its guidance on kind of consultations required during the process of appointment of the Lokayukta and the orders of the apex court are awaited.
The Karnataka High Court on Monday had observed that the “public is getting restless” because of the State Government’s failure to appoint the Lokayukta for the past 10 months.
Suresh Kumar said the State Government has taken note of the remarks made by the High Court.
''We are anticipating the Supreme Court judgment on the appeal soon. We will take up the appointment of Lokayukta as soon as we get the apex court’s orders,” he said.
The appointment of Lokayukta would be taken up on a priority basis soon after the Apex Court delivered its verdict on the appeal, he said.
He said the post of the Lokayukta remained vacant after Justice V Shivraj Patil tendered his resignation over a housing site allotment controversy in September last.
Later, Justice S R Bannurmath, former chief justice of the Kerala High Court, rejected the offer to the Lokayukta made by the State Government.
He said recently the Karnataka High Court quashed the appointment of Upa Lokayukta and former High Court Judge Chandrashekaraiah on the ground that Chief Justice of the High Court was not consulted while appointing the Upa Lokayukta.
The State Government had filed an appeal in the Supreme Court seeking guidance on the kind of consultations that were necessary in the appointment of Lokayukta or Upa Lokayukta.
Jayachandra, who raised the issue, alleged that the State Government had been deliberately delaying the appointment of the Lokayukta fearing more legislators and ministers would go to jail in the coming days.