The ongoing tussle over the appointment of Lokayukta in Uttar Pradesh intensified Tuesday with Governor Ram Naik refusing to accept the name of Justice (retd) Ravindra Singh for the post, as recommended by Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav.
Stating that he was not bound to accept the recommendation, Naik returned the file asking the state government to send a name “except (that of) Justice Singh” at the earliest. Singh had demitted office last month as judge of the Allahabad High Court.
This comes three days after the CM, after taking legal opinion from Advocate General, principal secretary (Law) and Legal Remembrancer, recommended Singh’s name for the fourth time citing that Governor was bound by the advice of the council of ministers, which had cleared the name earlier this month. The file was sent to Raj Bhavan on August 22.
In a 17-page reply sent on Tuesday afternoon, the Governor said he had “no valid reasons” as to why the view expressed by the Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court “against Singh be not believed”.
“I, therefore, decline to accept the said recommendation made by the Chief Minister or the state council of ministers in favour of Singh for his appointment as the new Lokayukta of Uttar Pradesh,” Naik wrote.
While returning the file, the Governor quoted excerpts from different letters that Chief Justice (Allahabad High Court) D Y Chandrachud had written to Akhilesh raising objection over selection of Singh as new Lokayukta.
In his letter, dated April 17, 2015, the Chief Justice had informed CM that prior to the appointment as judge of High Court in 2004, “Singh was Additional Advocate General for the state of UP under then Samajwadi Party government of which Mulayam Singh Yadav was CM. His brother Akhilesh Singh is a government advocate… Shivam Yadav, one of his two sons, is a practicing advocate in Allahabad High Court, while other son, Raman, practices in Supreme Court. Both of them are on the panel of the state government and bodies owned or controlled by the state”.