UP Governor sends Lokayukta Bill to President

Lucknow, May 6- Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik has sent another bill passed by the state legislature for the consent of President saying the proposed bill was against the spirit of Constitution. The Bill which has been sent to the President is Uttar Pradesh Lokayukta and Deputy Lok Ayukta (amendment) Bill 2015 which talks about keeping the Chief Justice of High Court out of the selection panel for Lokayukta. Government said here today that the proposed bill has abolished the role of Chief Justice in selection of Lokayukta and deputy Lokayukta which is in contravention of the spirit of Constitution. “As Government’s proposed bill has created a constitutional impasse President’s consent is mandatory in this case,” Governor said in a written statement here. The UP Assembly had passed the Uttar Pradesh Lokayukta and Up-Lokayukta (Amendment) Bill, 2015, to amend Lokayukta Act, dropping the Allahabad High Court Chief Justice from the selection committee. The Bill proposed that the selection committee be made a four-member body comprising the chief minister, Leader of Opposition, Speaker and a retired judge who would be selected in consultation by the chief minister and the Speaker. The same bill was passed by the State council without any change in August 2015. The Government had made these amendments after Chief Justice had objected to some names proposed by Chief Minister as new Lokayukta. The then Chief Justice DY Chandrachud had questioned the validity of the procedure adopted by the government for selection of Lokayukta following Lokayukta Amendment Bill passed by the state government in both Houses of state legislature. However, new Lokayukta in UP Justice Sanjay Mishra was appointed by Supreme Court after the proposed committee failed to come to a conclusion on one name. Governor said he has informed Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav about this development. Earlier Government had sent two Bills for President’s assent drawing ire from Urban Development Minister Md Azam Khan who said Raj Bhawan was trying to downplay constitutional propriety of State legislature.

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