New Delhi: Corruption is a "disease like cancer" which if not detected in time will spread "its malignancy" in the polity of the country, the Supreme Court said on Wednesday.
"Corruption in a civilised society is a disease like cancer, which if not detected in time, is sure to spread its malignancy among the polity of the country, leading to disastrous consequences," a bench of justices B S Chauhan and F M Ibrahim Kalifulla said.
The court made the observations in its judgement that dismissed the Gujarat government`s plea against the state high court`s January 18, 2012 order which had upheld Justice (Retd) R A Mehta`s appointment as Lokayukta, an anti-graft watchdog body, by Governor Kamla Beniwal.
The apex court also said, "Corruption in society is required to be detected and eradicated at the earliest as it shakes the socio-economic-political system in an otherwise healthy, wealthy, effective and vibrating society.
"Liberty cannot last long unless the state is able to eradicate corruption from public life."
The state government in its plea had contended that the personal discretion exercised by the governor in issuing the appointment warrant of Lokayukta was "unwarranted."
The government had said the appointment was done without consulting it.
The apex court, however, upheld the appointment saying it was done in consultation with the Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court.
The governor had on August 25, 2011 appointed justice Mehta to the post of Lokayukta, which had been lying vacant for last eight years.