Lokayukta appointment: Governor Beniwal's view unwarranted, says SC
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday said the view of Gujarat Governor Kamla Beniwal that she was not bound by the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers and had the exclusive right to appoint the Lokayukta was "unwarranted and logically insupportable."
A bench of justices B S Chauhan and F M Ibrahim Kalifulla said, "The governor's version of events, stated in her letter of March 3, 2010, to the effect that she was not bound by the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers and that she had the exclusive right to appoint the Lokayukta is most certainly not in accordance with the spirit of the Constitution.
"It seems that this was an outcome of an improper legal advice and the opinion expressed is not in conformity with the Rule of Law. The view of the governor was unwarranted and logically insupportable."
The apex court also faulted the governor saying she had "misjudged her role" for appointing Mehta without holding consultations with the state government.
It also observed "The Governor is not answerable to either House of the State, or to the Parliament, or even to the Council of Ministers, and his/her acts cannot be subject to judicial review.
"In such a situation, unless he/she acts upon the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers, he/she will become all powerful and this is an anti-thesis to the concept of democracy."
The court made the observation while dismissing the state government's plea challenging the appointment of retired Justice R A Mehta as the Lokayukta on the ground that the government had consulted it while appointing him to the post.
The bench, however, had upheld the appointment saying it was made in consultation with the Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court.