Karnataka Lokayukta Justice Y Bhaskar Rao quits four months after son’s arrest

Rao, who had resisted growing calls for stepping down following the allegation, had tendered his resignation on Monday.

By: Express News Service | Bengaluru | Updated: December 9, 2015 7:47 am
Justice Bhaskar Rao File photo of Karnataka Lokayukta Y Bhaskar Rao

Karnataka Lokayukta Justice Y Bhaskar Rao has stepped down, more than four months after his son Ashwin Rao, 49, was arrested on charges of running an extortion racket from offices of the Lokayukta. Rao’s resignation was accepted by Governor Vajubhai Vala Tuesday.

Rao’s resignation comes after opposition parties BJP and JDS initiated an impeachment motion against him in the Assembly, accusing him of incompetence and misconduct related to his son’s “illegal” activities.

Rao, appointed in 2013, is the second successive Karnataka Lokayukta to exit office in controversial circumstances and before completion of the five-year tenure. Justice Shivaraj Patil had resigned in September 2011 following allegations that he owned property in Bengaluru in violation of rules.

Rao hit headlines in May when an executive engineer in the state government accused his son of demanding Rs 1 crore as bribe for not taking up a corruption case against him. In wake of the allegation, Upa Lokayukta Justice Subhash Adi ordered Lokayukta police to probe the matter.

Following a request from Rao, the Congress government instituted an SIT to probe the allegations againt Ashwin and others. Even as the SIT was being constituted, Lokayukta police registered an FIR against Ashwin, followed by four more complaints of extortion against Ashwin, Lokayukta Public Relations Officer Syed Riyaz and others, including journalists and RTI activists.

The SIT nabbed Ashwin from his flat in Kukatpally near Hyderabad on July 27. After his son’s arrest, Rao went on leave.

The SIT is yet to name Rao in any of the chargesheets filed against Ashwin. It has alleged that Ashwin and his associates used the Lokayukta’s official residence and office conference hall to threaten government officials to pay bribes. Without formally seeking Rao’s removal, the ruling Congress introduced a new law in July to facilitate speedy impeachment of Lokayukta.

With the Opposition bringing an impeachment motion against Rao and the ruling Congress bringing the same motion against Upa Lokayukta Justice Subhash Adi, the institution has been virtually rendered ineffectual as both Rao and Adi are “precluded’’ from carrying out duties.

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  1. M
    Mahabalappa Chandrashekar
    May 11, 2016 at 6:03 pm
    Hopeless....... Justice Bhaskar Rao, his son and other Culprits should be hanged
    1. R
      Dec 8, 2015 at 12:23 pm
      Why wouldnt he be corrupt? The entire Siddaramaiah govt is corrupt.
      1. Keerthi Kumar
        Dec 9, 2015 at 4:15 pm
        He brings bad Name to the organisation Karnataka Lokayukta and himself
        1. C
          Dec 8, 2015 at 10:22 am
          Mr. Kejriwal Pl be beware! It can happen in Delhi also!
          1. R
            Ranjit Pande
            Dec 8, 2015 at 12:19 pm
            This only amplifies the fundamental question that practical people were asking Anna Hazare at the outset. Who, just who will police the policeman? How can you expect a department of a few thousand people if not more, to land in India from an alien planet, not afflicted by the epidemic that runs rampant in the country, namely, corruption?
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