Delhi Govt sends names of five judges for Lokayukta's post

 Setting the ball rolling for appointing a new Lokaukta, the AAP government has sent a list of five former judges to the Chief Justice of Delhi High Court for the post even as it stressed the need for an amendment to the existing Lokayukta Act.

PTI| Last Updated: Sep 02, 2015, 23:12 PM IST

New Delhi: Setting the ball rolling for appointing a new Lokaukta, the AAP government has sent a list of five former judges to the Chief Justice of Delhi High Court for the post even as it stressed the need for an amendment to the existing Lokayukta Act.

Sources said the list was sent to the Chief Justice G Rohini three days back.

As per Delhi Lokayukta and Uplokayukta Act 1995, the Lokayukta is appointed after consultations with the chief justice of high court and the leader of opposition in the Delhi assembly.

Lt Governor Najeeb Jung had recently written to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal asking him to send a panel of names for the post of anti-graft ombudsman without any delay.

"Government has recently sent the panel of five names of candidates for the post of Lokayukta to Delhi High Court's Chief Justice," sources said without divulging the names.

They said Government may soon call a Special Session of Delhi Assembly to amend the existing Lokayukta and Upa Lokayukta Act as it feels the current legislation does not give the Lokayukta power to punish the corrupt.

Last month, Law Commission Chairman A P Shah had turned down Arvind Kejriwal government's proposal to appoint him as Delhi's next Lokayukta.

Delhi's last Lokayukta Justice (Retd) Manmohan Sarin had relinquished office in November 2013 after completing a five-year term.

As per provision of the Delhi Lokayukta and Uplokayukta Act, only a Chief Justice or a high court judge having seven years of experience are eligible for Lokayukta's post.

Leader of the Opposition in Delhi assembly Vijender Gupta had recently filed a petition in the High Court saying the government has not consulted him regarding the appointment of Lokayukta. The matter will be heard on September 3.

The post has been lying vacant since November 2013.

"Government doesn't consider the existing Lokayukta Act to be more effective. Government is currently working on strengthening the Act so that officials found guilty of corruption could be prosecuted," the sources said.

The official said that before the Winter Session, government may call a Special Session to amend the existing Lokayukta Act.

The Lt Governor had written a separate letter to the Justice Rohini in which he had blamed the Delhi government for delay in filling up the post of Lokayukta.