Current Affairs

Notice to Goa Govt on CIC appointment

Adv. Aires Rodrigues has today served a legal notice on the Chief Secretary of Goa demanding that the illegal and high handed appointment of Mrs. Leena Mehendale as Goa’s Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) be revoked.

Adv. Rodrigues has in his notice stated that if the appointment was not cancelled by 10 am tomorrow he would be constrained to move the Bombay High Court at Panaji for appropriate orders.

Referring to the statement made today by the Advocate General of Goa before the High Court that the Goa Government has appointed Leena Mehendale as the Chief State Information Commissioner, Adv. Rodrigues has stated that it was appalling that the Goa Government had gone ahead with the appointment knowing fully well that the appointment was unconstitutional, illegal & void.

Adv. Rodrigues in his notice has alleged that the procedure followed by the Goa Government in selecting Leena Mehendale for the post of Chief Information Commissioner was flawed and in utter violation of the directions issued by the Supreme Court in the Namit Sharma case.

Adv. Rodrigues has drawn the Chief Secretary’s attention that the appointment of Leena Mehendale as CIC was untenable even in the light of the judgment passed today by the Supreme Court in the review petition filed by the Union of India in the Namit Sharma case.  

Pointing out that as directed by the Supreme Court the Chief Information Commissioner has necessarily to discharge judicial and quasi judicial functions and the post requires judicial approach, legal experience, knowledge and expertise of law. Adv. Rodrigues has stated that Leena Mehendale had obtained the Law degree only in 2010 and did not possess the required vast knowledge and experience of law.

Alleging that Leena Mehendale was even rejected for the post of Chief Information Commissioner by the Maharashtra Government, Adv. Rodrigues has in his notice stated that it was surprising that Mehendale did not route as required her application for the post of Chief Information Commissioner through the Central Administrative Tribunal of which she is currently a member.

Stating that all the states require the Chief Information Commissioner and the Information Commissioners to have knowledge of the local language, Adv. Rodrigues has stated that Mehendale does not have the knowledge of Konkani and wondered whether the Goa Government was unable to find a Goan for the post of CIC.

Meanwhile, when the petition filed by Adv. Aires Rodrigues challenging the selection of Sandesh Prabhudesai as State Information Commissioner came up for hearing before the Bombay High Court at Goa, the Advocate General Atmaram Nadkarni submitted to the Court that the selection of Sandesh Prabhudesai and Stanley Coutinho as State Information Commissioners had been scrapped and that the process would be conducted afresh.

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