'Vokkaligara Sangha admin can’t take policy decisions'

'Vokkaligara Sangha admin can’t take policy decisions'

The High Court of Karnataka has barred the government-appointed administrator of the Rajya Vokkaligara Sangha from taking policy decisions. 

Justice Aravind Kumar restrained the administrator, the retired IAS officer H S Ashokananda, on a petition filed by the Sangha and two others challenging his appointment. The court also issued notices to the government, the registrar of societies and Ashokananda. 

The petitioners stated that though the government can appoint the administrator under Section 27A of the Karnataka Societies Registration Act, 1960, the law mandates it to hold an enquiry before taking such a decision. The registrar, too, must hold an enquiry on behalf of the government before appointing the administrator. 

But in this case, let alone hold the enquiry, neither did the government issue a notice to the Sangha nor allowed it to have its say in the matter, the petitioners claimed. Thus, the government did not fulfil the minimum requirement of giving an opportunity to the Sangha before taking such a drastic decision, the petitioners said and called the move "arbitrary". 

The petitioners argued that the administrator's appointment takes away the rights of the Sangha's elected representatives. They said they had sought to regulate the Sangha's functioning by moving a no-confidence motion and were preparing to hold elections. The petitioners urged the court to quash the government's order of August 20, 2018, about the appointment of the administrator.

The court will hear the matter again on September 4. 

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