Setting the stage for another confrontation with Narendra Modi government in Gujarat, Governor Kamla Beniwal on Tuesday returned the Gujarat Lokayukta Aayog Bill 2013 passed by the Assembly in April this year.
"The Governor has not given her assent to Gujarat Lokayukta Aayog Bill 2013, which was passed in the state Assembly in April this year, and has sent it back to the government for review," state government spokesperson and Finance Minister Nitin Patel told PTI on Tuesday.
Patel declined to elaborate the grounds on which the Governor sent the Bill back to the government.
"We have just received the communication from the Governor and we are yet to go through it. So, at this point, we don't exactly know that on what points the review has been sought," he said.
According to sources, the Governor, in her two-page communication to the government, had suggested a review of almost all the new provisions of the Bill which aimed at replacing the existing Gujarat Lokayukta Act.
The Modi government and the Governor had been at loggerheads on the issue of appointment of Lokayukta in the state.
The Governor, bypassing the state government, had appointed Justice (retd) R A Mehta as Lokayukta on August 25, 2011 to a post which was lying vacant for last eight years then.
Mehta's appointment had resulted into a long legal battle due to which the post of Lokayukta is still lying vacant in the state.
On April 2, state Assembly had passed the bill, which aims to curtail the power of Governor and chief justice of the high court in the appointment of the corruption watchdog.