Adv. Aires Rodrigues in his complaint has drawn Governor Wanchoo’s attention to the note moved on 13th March 2012,by Advocate General Atmaram Nadkarni recommending amongst others the name of Prachi Sawant for appointment as Additional Government Advocate in the High Court though she had not even completed one year of passing the law degree. A copy of that note was obtained by Adv. Rodrigues from the Law department under the Right to Information Act.
Questioning as to how the Goa government could expect such a person to defend the interest of the State before the High Court, Adv. Rodrigues in his complaint to the Governor has alleged that the apparent consideration for her nomination and recommendation was that she was the junior of Atmaram Nadkarni.
Drawing the Governors’s attention that Prachi Sawant had objected to her bio-data being disclosed under the Right to information Act, Adv. Rodrigues has stated that the reason for her objection was obvious but that the truth did not remain concealed for too long.
Conceding that the recommending of names for appointment of Government Advocates in the High Court may be the discretion of the Advocate General, Adv. Rodrigues has demanded that this discretion had to be judicious and could not be arbitrary or more so high-handed.
Adv. Rodrigues has stated that mere fact that a person is a junior attached to Atmaram Nadkarni’s office was no qualification for the person to be appointed to an important position as Additional Government advocate in the High Court.
Adv. Rodrigues has further stated that since the Government advocates are paid from the State coffers, that public money could not be poured down the drain to accommodate inexperienced persons as a bounty out of the public exchequer.
Stating that experience, competence and merit should be the sole criteria in the appointment of Government advocates particularly in the High Court so that the State’s interests are adequately defended, Adv. Rodrigues has alleged that the Office of the Advocate General was being considered a fiefdom to accommodate all and sundry.
Recalling that he had earlier raised the issue how former Advocate General Subodh Kantak at the cost of the State exchequer had accommodated his own nephew initially as a Clerk while he was a Law student and thereafter as Additional Government Advocate, Adv. Rodrigues has claimed that nothing appears to have changed with the new Government in place.
Alleging that the often touted mantra of Zero tolerance to corruption, appears to be nothing short of rhetoric to fix political opponents and an apparent aim to sweep the blatant illegalities under the carpet, Adv. Rodrigues has urged Governor Wanchoo to direct appropriate action to ensure that the integrity and sanctity of the Advocate General’s office is not further eroded.