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Bengal’s new Lokayukta Justice (retd.) Asim Roy, decides Opp leaders

Suvendu Adhikari, Leader of Opposition, was absent during the meeting of the committee and also stayed away from the selection committee meeting to decide the name of the State Human Rights Commission chairperson

SNS | Kolkata |

West Bengal Opposition leaders have elected the new Lokayukta following deliberations today.

Complying with Supreme Court orders, Justice (retd.) Asim Roy has been recommended as the new Lokayukta of the state unanimously.

The recommendation will be sent to Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar for his approval. Only thereafter, the official swearing-in of the Lokayukta can take place.

State Assembly sources said that the name of State Human Rights Commission chairperson has also been finalised.

Leader of Opposition and BJP’s Nandigram MLA Suvendu Adhikari was absent during the meeting of the Opposition leaders to decided the names of these significant posts.

On Monday, the government recommended Justice (retd.) Jyotirmoy Bhattacharya as the chairperson of the SHRC and Shivkanta Prasad as member-commission. These names will also be sent to Dhankhar who will give the final nod.

However, Assembly Speaker Biman Bandopadhyay has said that Governor should give his consent to the name recommended by the committee, the Constitution says.

Chief minister Mamata Banerjee said that her government follows the protocols of the National Human Rights Commission.

The committee that recommends the name comprises chief minister, Assembly Speaker, Leader of Opposition and state Parliamentary Affairs minister. Adhikari’s absence in a vital meeting has sparked controversy.

On 22 December, Adhikari wrote to chief secretary H K Dwivedi demanding name of the SHRC chairperson and since the government failed to reply, sources said that he decided to abstain from the meeting.

An indisposed Partha Chatterjee due to ill health participated in the meeting virtually.

Lokayukta was created in 2003 in West Bengal and while appointing the Governor can consult the Chief Justice of the Calcutta High Court and Leader of Opposition.