BENGALURU: IN a major development, the Karnataka Lokayukta on Saturday strongly contended before the High Court that police officers of the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB), which is under the control of the state government, cannot be expected to conduct “fair and impartial inquiry or investigation in relation to high-ranking public servants”.
It has also contended that there is absolutely no chance for “vindictive action at the instance of political opponents” against people representatives if police officers work under the Lokayukta, which is an independent body. But the ACB is not independent as it was formed by “colourable exercise of power”, it said.
Senior counsel for the Lokayukta made this submission before a division bench of Chief Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice B M Shyam Prasad, who are hearing a batch of public interest petitions challenging the legality of the formation of the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) by the state government on March 14, 2016.
“The formation of another Bureau or another wing which is not under the supervision and control of the Lokayukta does not align with the object of the Karnataka Lokayukta Act. There is violation of fundamental rights under Article 14 and 21 of the Constitution as the public servants are placed differently...”, the counsel said.
In counter, Additional Advocate General A S Ponnanna argued that there was no “colourable exercise of power” in forming the ACB and that it is an independent body.
The court adjourned the hearing to September 25.