Legal experts came out in support of today’s unprecedented order of the Supreme Court asking Calcutta High Court judge C S Karnan to appear in person and explain his allegations against judges, saying the apex court must have thought “enough is enough” and that his actions needed to be dealt with a “stern hand”.
A seven-judge bench headed by Chief Justice J S Khehar has not only summoned Justice Karnan on February 13 but also asked him to refrain from doing judicial and administrative work with immediate effect.
Noted jurist and former Attorney General Soli Sorabjee was blunt in his reaction and called for “stern” action against the HC judge.
“Justice Karnan’s actions have lowered the authority and dignity of the judiciary. A sitting judge making such allegations against brother judges must be dealt with a stern hand,” Sorabjee said.
On the issue of the show cause notice to the judge in the suo-motu contempt proceeding, he said, “Let’s see what happens.”
Another senior lawyer, who is associated with the case and did not want to be named, said the apex court rightly issued the notice and divested Justice Karnan from taking up judicial and administrative work as it must have thought “enough is enough”.
“He (Justice Karnan) wrote letters against his brother judges and kept occupying the government accommodation given to him in Chennai which he should have vacated after his transfer from the Madras High Court. The Supreme Court at a certain point must have thought enough is enough and issued a show cause,” the lawyer said.
Senior advocate and Rajya Sabha member K T S Tulsi condemned Justice Karnan’s actions and his open letters, saying he has rendered himself “unfit” as a judge with his “gross misbehaviour”.
He concurred with the views of Sorabjee and said, “Justice Karnan has rendered himself unfit as a judge and deserves to be impeached. This is gross misbehaviour by him. If he had any issues, he should have informed the proper authority and not have gone out to the media.”
In a packed courtroom, the seven-judge bench asked Justice Karnan to return all judicial and administrative files in his possession to Registrar General of the High Court immediately.
The bench also comprising Justices Dipak Misra, J Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, M B Lokur, P C Ghose and Kurian Joseph has now listed the suo motu contempt petition against him for further hearing on February 13 when Justice Karnan will have to appear and give his version.
( Source – PTI )