Reacting to the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the appointment of Gujarat Lokayukta, the BJP on Wednesday said the view of the State government should be respected in such matters and the Governor should not exercise discretionary powers.
“We are yet to get a copy of the Supreme Court judgement but suffice it to say that we believe primacy should be given to the Cabinet recommendation in the matter of appointment of the Lokayukta,” BJP chief spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad told reporters.
Mr. Prasad, however, welcomed the Supreme Court decision to set aside the observations made against Gujarat Chief Narendra Modi regarding the appointment of Justice (retd.) R.A. Mehta as the Gujarat Lokayukta.
The BJP insisted that the primacy of the Cabinet decision should be upheld in all cases except those in which the Governor has discretionary powers or where a collegium decides on the appointment.
Mr. Prasad maintained that in all other matters it is very established Constitutional position that the Cabinet’s recommendation prevails.
The BJP also condemned the Congress party’s attacks against Mr. Modi after the Supreme Court judgement.
“This is a cry of desperation from Congress. They have been roundly defeated in Gujarat five times of which three times were under Modi… After the convincing defeat in the recent elections, Congress should learn to be patient,” Mr. Prasad said.
The party also sought to know that if the Congress is so serious about the Lokayukta’s office, why has it not taken action against Delhi Minister Raj Kumar Chauhan who was “seriously reprimanded” by the ombudsman.
The Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld Justice Mehta’s appointment by Governor Kamla Beniwal as the State’s Lokayukta.
The court also maintained that the Governor is bound to act under advice of the Council of Ministers but said the appointment is right as it was done in consultation with Gujarat High Court Chief Justice.