GPP Asks Guv to Urge Justice Mehta to Assume Office

GPP Asks Guv to Urge Justice Mehta to Assume Office

The Gujarat Parivartan Party (GPP) has written to Gujarat Governor Kamla Beniwal urging her to convince Justice (retd) R A Mehta to assume the office of the Gujarat Lokayukta.

"We request you to make one more effort to convince Justice R A Mehta to assume the office of the Lokayukta in the interest of the people of Gujarat," GPP, formed by rebel BJP leader and former chief minister Keshubhai Patel, said in a letter addressed to the Governor.

A GPP delegation which met the Governor was led by its general secretary Gordhan Zadafia.

Mehta, whose appointment as Gujarat Lokayukta was opposed by the Narendra Modi government in the Gujarat High Court and the Supreme Court, declined to assume office last Wednesday, saying that the controversy has "denigrated" the office of the anti-corruption watchdog.

He expressed his unwillingness to assume the office by writing a letter to the Governor and Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court.

"Justice Mehta's letter shows the Gujarat government's biased attitude as a result of which, Mehta felt he may not be able to perform his constitutional duty because of the state's non-cooperation," GPP's letter said.

"The post of Lokayukta remains vacant since 2003 and the number of cases of allegations of corruption have exceeded the time limit of five years, within which these were to be probed," the letter said.

"Despite being directed by the Supreme Court, the state government has not published the required notification till date. The state government never wanted cases of alleged corruption to be investigated by the Lokayukta. The steps initiated by the Gujarat government in the courts of law were a form of escapism," the letter said. 

"The delay made by the Gujarat government in issuing the notification is purely contempt of the Supreme Court order. We humbly request you to direct the state government to issue required notification within seven days or else we'll have to file a case of contempt of court against the state," the letter said.

The GPP also asked the Governor to urgently process the appointment of Lokayukta, in case Mehta declined to assume office even after further request.

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