SC declines to interfere in Upalokayukta case

SC declines to interfere in Upalokayukta case

The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to interfere in the proceedings initiated in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly for removal of Upalokayukta Justice Subhash B Adi.

A Bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and N V Ramana noted the inquiry committee, set up by the Chief Justice of the Karnataka High Court on a reference by the Speaker, was to submit its report by May 26.

“We are not inclined to interfere at this stage. We are informed the final arguments are over before the inquiry committee. Let the order of the committee come. Suppose the report is in your favour, we may not require to hear the matter,” the bench told senior advocate Rajeev Dhawan, who appeared for Justice Adi. The court also turned down a plea made by Dhawan for issuance of notice to the Speaker and put the matter for consideration in the first week of July.

Dhawan argued the proceedings started subsequent to a notice of motion signed by 78 MLAs for Adi’s removal on November 27 last was null and void.

He contended that though there was a contradictory stand by the Speaker’s office with regard to the proceedings, a letter was sent to the Upalokayukta to stop functioning. “If the first stage is itself flawed and non est, how can he be thrown out,” the counsel submitted.

The bench, however, said, “Today, we are awaiting the order of the inquiry committee. Let’s wait. Why should we interfere at this stage.”

The apex court had on May 6 refused to grant Justice Adi’s plea for status quo.

Justice Adi challenged the April 26 order of the High Court, which had also declined to go into the merit of his plea, holding that it would be against his own interests as the inquiry was pending before the judge nominated by the Chief Justice of the High Court.

“We are of the view that though judicial review is permissible to challenge the legality of either the notice of motion or the procedure adopted by the Speaker admitting the motion, such a judicial review can be exercised by this court only, if, the said proceedings culminate in the order of removal of the Upalokayukta,” the high court had held.
 

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