Appointment of IAS officer as Lokayukta registrar questioned

NGO says 2 cases against incumbent were closed in just 9 days

Appointment of IAS officer as Lokayukta registrar questioned

While IAS officer P C Jaffer is all set to take charge as the new registrar of the Lokayukta, it is found that two cases had been registered against him and both were closed within nine days of registration.

Janaadhikaara Sangharsha Parishath (JSP), the complainant before the Upalokayukta in the corruption case in Lokayukta, said that the complaints against Jaffer pertained to corruption, violation of rules and misuse of power.

The first complaint registered was on May 20, 2014, and closed on May 28 the same year. The second complaint was filed on June 27, 2015, and closed on July 6.

From the database of Lokayukta complaints, sourced by JSP members, it is revealed that around 820 complaints against senior IAS officers were filed between January 2014 and June 2015 and more than 500 complaints were closed.

It was also revealed that 26 complaints filed against former BBMP Commissioner Lakshminarayana, 15 cases against Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) Commissioner T Sham Bhatt, 11 complaints against Chief Secretary Kaushik Mukherjee, 10 complaints against Bengaluru DC (Urban) V Shankar and nine complaints against Gopalaiah (IAS) were closed during this period.

This apart, some complaints against these officials are still under scrutiny, while one case each against Kaushik Mukherjee and Sham Bhatt have been referred to the Lokayukta police.

Complaints by the public

“These are not suo motu cases taken up by the Lokayukta, instead complaints filed by public. With so many complaints against senior IAS officers, one wonders what the real motive could be, of appointing a IAS officer as the registrar, who is the head of the institution after the Lokayukta. These factors raise doubts that the State government is attempting a backdoor entry into the Lokayukta office. The move certainly casts doubts over the intentions of the Siddaramaiah government over the Lokayukta investigations and this calls for a CBI investigation into all these complaints closed in the last two years, especially against senior IAS officers,” Adarsh Iyer of JSP said.

The JSP members said that they would file a memorandum with S K Mukherjee, the acting chief justice of the High Court, to take stern action against the government’s decision of appointing an IAS officer as registrar.

“We will write to the chief justice, requesting him to take serious note of the move by the government, overlooking the order of the High Court committee, headed by the chief justice, appointing Principal City, Civil and Sessions Judge Narendra Kumar Basavaraj Gunaki as the registrar,” he said.

Former Lokayukta N Santosh Hegde: I am not demeaning any IAS officer, as I have high regard for certain officers. However, the action of the government in overlooking the proposal of the High Court in regard to a judicial post in the Lokayukta is not acceptable.

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