K’taka: New Lokayukta selection process to begin

After its vain bid to install former Kerala Chief Justice SR Bannurmath as the Lokayukta, Karnataka Government is set to start afresh.

Updated: Feb 13, 2012, 00:49 AM IST

Mangalore: After its vain bid to install
former Kerala Chief Justice SR Bannurmath as the Lokayukta,
Karnataka Government is set to start afresh from Monday the
consultation process for picking a new candidate and hoped to
complete the exercise in about ten days.

The government has decided to scout for a new candidate in
view of Bannurmath`s choice being rejected by Governor HR
Bhardwaj and the former judge himself opting out of the post,
lying vacant for about five months now.

"I will commence the consultation process from tomorrow
itself. Will write to the High Court Chief Justice, presiding
officers of both the Houses of the legislature and also the
floor leaders of opposition parties," Chief Minister DV
Sadananda Gowda told reporters here.

The government wants to complete the exercise of
appointing a new Lokayukta within ten days, Gowda said
indicating it wanted to bring the curtains down on the issue.

In October last year, the BJP Government recommended
Bannurmath`s name for the Lokayukta post, but in the wake of a
controversy surrounding land acquired by the retired judge,
Bhardwaj refused his consent.

On Karnataka High Court Chief Justice Vikramjit Sen
objecting to appointment of former judge Chandrashekharaiah as
a Upa-Lokayukta, Gowda ruled out seeking his resignation and
asserted procedures had been followed while appointing him.

Gowda, however, said he would try to find a solution to
the issue over Chandrasekharaiah`s appointment by meeting the
Chief Justice, who has said he was not consulted by the
government as required under the Lokayukta Act.

Gowda said he would expand his ministry after presenting
the budget and shed additional portfolios like revenue, health
and others held by him. He now holds 16 portfolios in all.

PTI