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JUSTICE KARNAN: TALE OF A DEFIANT JUDGE

Vishad Srivastava

After having a Dalit Community President candidate announcement Supreme Court gives a big blow to the national parties for taking caste as a card for their success by proving constitution to be uppermost and everyone is equal as an individual.

Talking about the only justice who got sentenced for 6 months jail and who retires while he was absconded, that is JUSTICE KARNAN who had been arrested in Coimbatore by Bengal police team. After the arrest orders from apex court Justice Karnan ran away and after being arrested he gave threat to the police officers but officers did their job as per the orders given by the apex court. Bail plea was made by Karnan advocate before the division bench of DY Chandrachud and Sanjay Kishan Kaul on 21 June 2017 but his bail plea was rejected on the ground that seven bench judge has ordered for his imprisonment for 6 months for contempt of court.

Action in Sequence of this case

1.Justice Karnan was appointed judge of Madras High Court in 2009.

  1. In the year 2011 Justice Karnan wrote a letter to the National Commission for Scheduled Caste(NCSC) alleging that he faced caste based harassment from another judges at Madras High Court.
  2. NCSC Chairman P.L. Punia had forwarded the complaint letter to then Chief Justice of India S.H. Kapadia as CJI is the ultimate authority in judiciary.
  3. Two years later in January 2014 an open court controversy was held in which Madras High Court division bench comprising justice V.Danapalan and K.K. Sasidharan was hearing a public interest litigation petition seeking a direction to the authorities to return the list of judges who are selected through collegiums to send it back and make it a fresh one. Thirteen posts were vacant in Madras High Court out of which 12 were selected by the collegiums process against which protest broke out as all were not competent and they were assistant to the senior lawyers who were in litigation of criminal side. Madras High Court Bar Association declare 1 day boycott against this collegium recommendation. So when hearing was going on then Justice Karnan entered the courtroom saying that selection process was unfair to file an affidavit in his name as because he is also part of judiciary.

It left a serious question that can a judge can litigate in the same court?

  1. Justice Karnan had written a letter to C.J.I. and president regarding collegium system as undemocratic and autocratic. Appointment made by this procedure leave incompetent judge. He also mention that significance of National Judicial Appointment Commission is also under consideration in apex court.
  2. Justice Karnan transferred to Calcutta High Court but Karnan stayed CJI order and asked him to give him reply for his transfers.Moreover Supreme Court has directed the Madras High Court Chief Justice to not to give any judicial work to Justice Karnan
  3. Justice Karnan alleges on fellow judge of being rapist as he raped an intern during last year June internship who was doing under his fellow judge. Moreover on June 6 Madras High Court Bar Association decided to boycott the court of Justice Karnan due to his mental condition.
  4. On February 8 2017 seven judge bench does the first hearing in suo motu case of contempt of court . AG Mokul Rohtagi has submitted strict submission for action against it and bench also want to take step by step decision as it would set precedent. SC issued notice to Karnan of why not to start contempt case against him. Moreover all his case from judicial to administrative capacity had been taken away. The apex court his power to initiate proceeding under article129 and award punishment under article 142(2).
  5. On March 10 2017 bailable warrant issued against Karnan for not being present in the court. Karnan alleges that bench comprises of upper caste people will be biased and not favour a SC/ST point of view.
  6. Justice Karnan has passed his order for CBI investigation of seven bench judges and AG Mukul Rohtagi and file a report. He had used his power of section 482 Cr.P.C. and Article 226 to prevent himself. He directed secretary genral of Lok Sabha to place before this in Parliament so that impeachment proceeding of 7 judges could start according to Judicial Act.
  7. Justice Karnan rejected the bailable warrant issued against him when Police officers came to his residence.
  8. On March 31 Justice present before 7 Bench judge. Court order for filing of written affidavit but Justice karnan refused until judicial work is restored to which apex court advice to attach mental health report then they will consider. Moreover Karnan has warned them that he will not present next time in court if his work is not restored.
  9. Justice Karnan issued an order of not allowing 8 judges to fly abroad and give 14 crore compensation to him for SC/ST humiliation and for this supreme court orders Mental Examination of Justice Karnan.
  10. Justice Karnan issued non bailable warrant of 7 bench judge.
  11. On May 8 Justice issued 5 year imprisonment to CJI and 6 other judges of supreme court in SC/STPrevention of Atrocities Act.
  12. Finally a Seven judge bench orders for jail of 6 months in contempt of court to Justice Karnan. Media was now restrained to publish any statement made by Justice Karnan.

This was the complete story of Justice Karnan who started his war on valid and valuable points for SC/ST people and valid needed war against collegium but somehow got deflected and ends up nowhere and many ridiculous decision.

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