Ahmedabad: The Gujarat High Court today
issued a fresh notice to Retd Justice R A Mehta who was
appointed as the Lokayukta by the State Governor bypassing the
Narendra Modi government, which has challenged the decision.
The fresh notice was issued by division bench of
Justice Akil Kureshi and Justice Sonia Gokani after the
earlier notice issued on September 7 was not served to him.
The next hearing in the matter has now been scheduled for
September 28, when the court will also hear the contempt
petition against Modi for leaking his letter written to the
Prime Minister to the media.
Gujarat Governor Dr Kamla had last month appointed Mehta
as Lokayukta bypassing the state government on the post which
was vacant for the last seven years.
The state government has challenged the Governor`s
decision in the High Court.
In the next hearing, the court will also hear the
petition of Leader of Opposition Shaktisinh Gohil who wants to
join in as party in the contempt petition.
A bunch of petitions are being heard together by the
court which include state government`s petition challenging
the governor`s decision of appointing Mehta as Lokayukta
without consulting the council of ministers.
One is a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking
appointment of Lokayukta in thestate, as the post has been
vacant for over seven years.
Justice Kureshi today told one of the petitioners (who
was insisting that the notice be issued after hearing him),
that the court had not intention of delaying the matter and it
was acutely concerned about the issue.
He asked the petitioner`s lawyer that it would hear
him only after the main matter of the Lokayukta would be
decided. We do not want to divert from the issue at the
moment, the court said.
Others who have been served the notice include
Registrar General of Gujarat High Court and Principal
Secretary to the Chief Justice of Gujarat High court.
The HC registrar General and Principal Secretary to
Chief Justice also filed their reply with regard to the issue
through counsel Shalin Mehta.
On August 26, Gujarat governor Dr Kamla, bypassing the
Narendra Modi led government, appointed Retd Justice R A Mehta
as the state Lokayukta, a post which was vacant since 2003.
Aggrieved by this the state government challenged it
in the High Court on the same day contending that the decision
was "unconstitutional and unilateral".