Justice Nanje Gowda Venkatachala, former Karnataka Lokayukta and former judge of the Supreme Court, passed away in Bengaluru Wednesday morning. He was 90.
Justice Venkatachala was rushed to Ramaiah Memorial Hospital (RMH) in New BEL Road in the city after he had a fall while getting up from bed around 6 am Wednesday.
According to a statement issued by the hospital, he was brought in an unresponsive state. The statement released by RMH president Dr Naresh Shetty read, “Despite all resuscitate measures, he remained unresponsive. He was declared dead at 7 am.”
Justice Venkatachala served as Karnataka Lokayukta from July 3, 2001, to July 2, 2006, during which he did much to popularise the office among the public. He conducted several raids on public servants, disclosing their names and details of assets seized. He also gained popularity for his action against citizen complaints related to public service issues, including hospitals.
Condoling his death, Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa said, “He (Justice Venkatachala) became a household name in Karnataka after he assumed office as Lokayukta. His contribution to strengthen and instill faith about Lokayukta institution among people is outstanding. People will remember him for his fight against corruption.”
Leader of Opposition and former Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah wrote on Twitter, “Saddened by the demise of Former Karnataka Lokayukta & Rtd. Supreme Court Judge Shri. Venkatachala. His contribution to fight against corruption shall always be remembered. My deepest condolences to his family & friends.”
Saddened by the demise of Former Karnataka Lokayukta & Rtd. Supreme Court Judge Shri. Venkatachala. His contribution to fight against corruption shall always be remembered.
My deepest condolences to his family & friends. pic.twitter.com/O8c77piV1r
— Siddaramaiah (@siddaramaiah) October 30, 2019
Born in a farming family in Mittur village of Mulabagal taluk in Kolar district, Venkatachala first enrolled as an advocate on November 16, 1955, in the then High Court of Mysore (now Karnataka). He was active in his profession for over five decades.