IANS | New Delhi, April 20, 2018:
The Supreme Court on Thursday asked 11 states including Tripura and a union territory to expedite the process of appointing Lokayukta or Uplokayukta.
A bench of Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice R. Banumathi said that appointment “need not wait and the process (must) be expedited”.
Earlier, the court asked the Chief Secretaries of the states to explain the reasons for non-appointment of Lokayukta or Uplokayukta in their respective states or UT even after the law was enacted in 2013.
These include Jammu and Kashmir, Odisha, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Tripura, West Bengal, Arunachal Pradesh and the union territory of Puducherry.
On Thursday, many states filed affidavit saying they have been taking steps to appoint Lokayukta or Uplokayukta and some have recommended the name to a selection committee.
Posting the matter for July 10, the court sought report about the status of appointment.
The bench slammed Tamil Nadu when its counsel said it has a Vigilance Department.
“Do you think the Vigilance Department is enough and there is no need of Lokayukta in your state?” asked the bench, adding that it expects the state to take necessary action and file a compliance report.
Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh, and Telangana sought time.
The court order came on a petition by Bharatiya Janata Party leader and advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay, seeking appointment of Lokpal at the Centre and Lokayukta in the states.