Karnataka govt keen on Justice Vikramjit Sen as Lokayukta

Karnataka govt keen on Justice Vikramjit Sen as Lokayukta
Karnataka government is keen on proposing the name of the Supreme Court Judge Justice Vikramjit Sen as the next the Lokayukta.

"Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister T B Jayachandra have already had a discussion, in which both ministers were keen on suggesting Justice Sen's name as next Lokayukta," a high-ranking official told PTI here.

Moreover, the government was keen on Justice Sen as he is retiring on December 31, the sources said.

The government also evinced interest in the names of NHRC Acting Chairperson Justice Cyriac Joseph and former Chairperson of Karnataka State Human Rights Commission Justice S R Nayak to replace Justice Bhaskar Rao, who resigned over an alleged extortion racket in the anti-graft ombudsman's office involving his son.

A heated debate is underway on the name of Justice Nayak, as some section of the media has been claiming that he is ineligible for being appointed as Lokayukta as per Section 24 (3) of the Protection of Human Rights Act.

The Act states that the Chairperson or a member of the Human Rights Commission shall be ineligible for further employment under the government of the state or under the government of India, once he or she ceases to hold office.

Countering media reports, Jayachandra said the clause does not come in the way of Nayak's appointment to the post since the ombudsman is not an employee of the state government. "There is no master and servant relations between the government and the Lokayukta," he added.

Meanwhile, the Lokayukta screening committee postponed its meeting scheduled for today to January as opposition sought time as it was busy with the ensuing MLC elections in the state, sources said.

The government has taken serious note of the Advocate General Madhusudhan R Naik's incapability to convince Karnataka High Court of the motion moved by the legislature to remove Upalokayukta Subash B Adi and preclude him from discharging his duties, sources said.

Justice Adi resumed office soon after Justice Naik submitted to the High Court that there was no indication in the motion moved against Upalokayukta to restrain him from discharging his duties and that the government was not intimidating or coming in between his duty.

In his petition, Justice Adi argued that the motion was adopted without verifying valid reasons and sufficient grounds for his ouster. He contended that the motion initiated against him amounts to violation of procedure laid down in the recently amended Lokayukta Act.

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