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EC raps Bihar governor for illegal appointments
September 10, 2005 03:13 IST
In a strong indictment of the government in poll-bound Bihar, the Election Commission on Friday said appointments made to various constitutional bodies by Governor Buta Singh violated the model code of conduct.
A two-member team set up by EC to probe the appointments following complaints by Bharatiya Janata Party said in its report that the appointments to various posts in Bihar State Minority Commission, State Commission for Backward Classes and 15-point Programme Implementation Committee were notified by the state government on September 3, much after the model code came into effect."
The notification giving effect to the appointment was issued on September 3 at 6.30 pm when the model code came into force, the EC said.
Similarly, the file proposing appointments to the State Commission for Backward Classes was submitted to the governor on July 15 and was cleared by the governor on September 2. "Surprisingly, two members of the Backward Classes Commission Gulam Takir and Ram Karan are shown as having joined on forenoon of September 3 whereas the order of appointment was issued only after 6.15 pm on September 3," they said.
With regard to appointments to the 15-point Programme Implementation Committee, the report pointed out that the file was submitted to the governor on July 11 and cleared on September 2.
"It is surprising to note that Vice-Chairman Ashraj Asthanvi has taken over charge at 11.30 am on September 3 whereas the order of appointment was issued only after 8 pm on that day," it said.
While the files proposing appointments in Bihar Public Service Commission and Bihar State Nagrik Parishad were submitted to the governor on April 26, they were cleared on September 2.
Acting on the report, the EC ordered status quo be maintained with regard to non-statutory bodies like the 15-point Programme Implementation Committee and Bihar State Nagrik Parishad.
The Commission said in a letter to Bihar chief secretary that it was the duty of Bihar officers to have apprised the governor of the model code of conduct having come into force before issuing the notifications in pursuance of his orders on the relevant files."
Observing that the governor had cleared the files, pending for long, on the eve of announcement of poll schedule by the commission, EC sources said the 'officers have thus failed in the proper discharge of their duties and functions to observe the model code in letter and spirit'.