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“Governor appointing Lokayukt in Gujarat through ordinance against spirit of Constitution and precedence”: Gujarat Govt

Gandhinagar, Friday: Gujarat Government's spokesperson-minister Jay Narayan Vyas today said strongly protested the Governor's announcing the appointment of the Lokayukt for Gujarat, unworthy of the decorum of the high Constitutional post.

The minister said that for quite sometime the Raj Bhawan in Gujarat has been reduced to a Congress bhawan, using the place for acting against the democratically elected government. The government would decide on the Constitutional and other proprieties of Governor's appointment of the Lokayukt through an ordinance after in-depth study of all legal aspects.

The minister recalled that a related Bill was passed in the State Assembly last March to make the institution of Lokayukt stronger, including functionaries of the Local Self-Government and Panchayati Raj in addition to the Ministers. The Bill was sent to the Governor for assent, which she did not.

The present State Government is also at an advanced stage of appointing the Lokayukt on the advice of Council of Ministers in consultation with the Governor, including its preparedness for thrashing out any area of disagreement, if any, for reconsideration. The Governor could have sent back the Bill to the Government, but unfortunately bypassed the Constitutional process by directly appointing the Lokayukt through an ordinance, without even any consultation with the government, keeping the people in dark in a democracy.

Mr. Vyas said the Governor's direction is against the spirit of the Constitution and precedence. There was no need to as the existing provisions were sufficient, particularly when there was no stalemate, no inaction or no other hurdle from the government side.

The spokesperson-minister said the State Government will study in-depth legal and all other aspects of the issue if there has been any misuse of the Constitutional post by the Governor in appointing the Lokayukt through an ordinance. The High Court has fixed the hearing on the petition on August 30, 2011.

Meanwhile, the Gujarat Government has moved the Gujarat High Court stating the violation of 226 of the Constitution by the Governor for appointing the Lokayukta through ordinance, without keeping in mind the government's responsibility.

Mr. Vyas said the Congress leaders have been repeatedly creating uproar and spreading untruth over alleged delay by the State Government in the appointment of Lokayukt, while opposite is the case. People have a reason to know reasons for the delay. The related Bill was lying for consideration of the then Governor for three and a half years. In between, the government tried to discuss the Constitutional provisions with half a dozen opposition leaders over this period, but they just attended the meetings as a formality, occasionally tried to stall the procedure but extended no cooperation.

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