Current Affairs

CIC appointment challenged in HC

The Goa Government’s appointment of Leena Mehendale as the Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) has been challenged by Adv. Aires Rodrigues before the Bombay High Court at Goa. The petition will come up for hearing on 17th September before a Division bench comprising of Justice N.H.Patil and Justice U.V.Bakre.  In his petition filed under Article 226 of the Constitution, Adv. Rodrigues has submitted that the entire selection process and appointment of Leena Mehendale was illegal and not in accordance with law.

Adv. Rodrigues has sought directions to  revoke the appointment of  Leena Mehendale as the Goa State Chief Information Commissioner and that pending the hearing and final disposal of his petition that she be restrained from taking charge or functioning as the CIC.

Adv. Rodrigues has in his petition stated that the selection and appointment of Leena Mehendale was made in utter violation of the directions issued by the Supreme Court which mandated to adopt a fair and transparent method of recommending names for appointment to the post of CIC.

Adv. Rodrigues has also stated that in the selection of Leena Mehendale the selection committee had breached its obligation as stipulated by the Supreme Court by failing to indicate details of her alleged eminence in public life and her alleged knowledge and experience in the particular field, whilst recommending her name to the Governor for appointment as Chief Information Commissioner.  

Adv. Rodrigues has further submitted that the appointment of Leena Mehendale was contrary to law and void besides being in violation of the directions of the Supreme Court which mandates that only   persons of eminence in public life with wide knowledge and experience in all the fields of law, science and technology, social service, management, journalism, mass media or administration and governance, could be considered for appointment as Chief Information Commissioner.  

Adv. Rodrigues has in his petition submitteitted that Leena Mehendale could not have been considered for the post of CIC in view of the Goa Official language Act which mandates knowledge of Konkani which she did not have.

Adv. Rodrigues has also submitted that Leena Mehendale being a sitting member of the Central Administrative Tribunal did not as required route her application through the Chairman of the Central Administrative Tribunal, and neither had sought required permission for applying for the post of CIC.

Adv. Rodrigues has alleged that the selection and appointment of Leena Meendale to the post of CIC was arbitrary, contrary to all norms, rules and directions considering that there were other candidates who possessed the needed qualification, legal knowledge and experience.

Adv. Rodrigues has submitted that the selection of Leena Mehendale discloses non application of mind and was entirely arbitrary, made without any rational basis and lacking in transparency.

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