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Won’t spring Lokpal surprise, Govt promises SC

New Delhi, Apr 24 (PTI): The Union government on Thursday informed the Supreme Court that it will not take any immediate decision on the appointment of chairperson and members of the Lokpal, indicating that the decision in this regard might be left to the new government after the general elections.

Appearing before a bench headed by Justice R M Lodha, Solicitor General Mohan Parasaran said the government is not planning to take any decision on the appointment of a Lokpal. The apex court then posted the case for hearing on May 5.

The bench said there was no need for any interim order on a public interest litigation challenging the selection procedure for the Lokpal after the government assured the court that no decision will be taken till May 5.

The bench was hearing a plea filed by Common Cause, a non-government organisation, seeking a stay on the entire selection process of appointment of chairperson and members of the Lokpal, saying the government was going ahead with it despite the apex court being seized of the issue.        

“It is submitted that the latest move by the government to proceed with the appointment of the chairperson and members of the Lokpal, even while this court is seized of the issue of the validity of the rules framed under the Lokpal Act, is not only highly improper but also illegal and arbitrary,” the application has said.        

The NGO has filed the fresh plea following apex court's oral observation during an earlier hearing in which the bench had said if it comes across any such development (by the government so far as the selection of the Lokpal and its members was concerned), it would be at liberty to approach this court for interim directions.        

The NGO's plea, filed through advocate Prashant Bhushan, has sought to declare “illegal” the rules under which selections are being done.

The NGO has filed the fresh plea in the matter pending before the apex court in which it had questioned the entire selection process for appointment of chairperson and members of the Lokpal.