By Ravi B. Naik
For several days now, the press and the electronic media have been repeatedly projecting the opinion of the Lokayukta with regard to its investigating powers vis-à-vis those of the Justice Padmaraj Commission of Inquiry. The state of Karnataka has entrusted the latter with the inquiry into the de-notification of lands from 1995 till date. During this period, H.D. Devegowda, J.H. Patel, S.M. Krishna, Dharam Singh, H.D. Kumaraswamy, and B.S. Yeddyurappa, have occupied the post of Chief Minister.
Hon’ble Justice Santosh Hegde, Lokayukta, State of Karnataka has repeatedly tried to make the point that the state government has deliberately appointed a Judicial Commission under the Commission of Inquiry Act, 1952 to curtail his powers. He repeatedly made reference to section 8(2)(b) of the Karnataka Lokayukta Act, 1984 (“the Act”) and has been projecting that his concurrence had not been taken before entrusting the inquiry to a Judicial Commission.