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Big jolt for Modi as Supreme Court upholds appointment of Gujarat Lokayukta

Publish Date: 02 Jan 2013, 10:57 AM
Last Updated: 02 Jan 2013, 03:25 PM
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Jolt for Modi, Governor’s decision upheld
Jolt for Modi, Governor’s decision upheld

New Delhi: In a big jolt to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi the Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed Gujarat government's plea challenging Governor Kamla Beniwal's decision to appoint Justice (retd) R A Mehta as Gujarat's Lokayukta.

A bench of justices B S Chauhan and F M Ibrahim Kalifulla rejected the state’s appeal against the order of the Gujarat High Court, which had upheld the governor's decision last January.

The High Court's verdict had been delivered by Justice V M Sahai after a division bench gave a split judgement on the legitimacy of the governor's action in Justice Mehta's appointment as Lokayukta.

Justice Sahai, who decided the matter as a third judge, had also pulled up Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi for creating a constitutional crisis and held that the governor had the discretionary power to make the appointment. He had said the "pranks" played by the chief minister on the Lokayukta issue "demonstrates deconstruction of our democracy."

Challenging the high court's order, the state government had contended that the personal discretion exercised by the governor in unilaterally issuing the warrant of appointment of Lokayukta was "unwarranted."

It had also objected to the use of "very harsh expressions and language" against Modi by the high court and had sought expunction of those remarks.

The governor had on August 25, 2011 appointed Justice Mehta to the post as Lokayukta, which had been lying vacant for the last eight years.


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  • Radha Raman07 Jan 2013, 00:00 AM

    supreme court has complicated rather than sorted out the case of appointment of Lokayukta in the State. Protecting its turf and giving the CJ of Guj High Court primacy over the opinion of State Chief Minister, Apex Court, however, clarified that Governor had exceeded her Jurisdiction, yet the appointment was not illegal. i don't think where is the Constitutional position of "aid and advice of council of Ministers" and the Governor is bound to act according to the aid and advice of cabinet. I m sure no governor will be ready tolearn the lesson through this stricture nor is this the last case of judicial overreach where appointment of lokayukta is made bypassing the Chief Minister of a State thereby usurping the role of executive.