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In yet another bizarre twist in the Justice CS Karnan episode, the sitting Calcutta High Court judge has passed an “order” directing the seven senior-most judges of the Supreme Court to appear before him at his “Rosedale Residential Court”, reports India Today.
The controversial judge has called upon Chief Justice of India JS Khehar and Justices Dipak Misra, J Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan Lokur, PC Ghose and Kurian Joseph to answer as to why they should not be declared guilty of violating the provisions of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Atrocities) Act.
The Calcutta High Court judge, whose administrative and judicial duties have been suspended in light of the pending contempt case against him, is apparently miffed with the fact that CJI Khehar questioned his mental stability during the last hearing.
When he stated in court on March 31 that he was “mentally disturbed”, Justice Khehar shot back, saying,
“If you feel that you are not mentally prepared to respond then please produce a medical certificate.”
And now, he has invoked his “extraordinary writ jurisdiction” once more to summon the judges to his residence in order to decide the quantum of punishment each one of them must face.
Moreover, in the order passed today, he directed the Centre and the state governments not to avail the services of the judges and asked the Supreme Court Registry to freeze the pension benefits of the judges until the compensation of 14 crore is recovered.
Further, he has appealed to foreign countries not to issue visas permitting the entry of the seven judges and has directed the Airports Authority of India to not allow these seven judges to travel abroad. He has also ordered that the judges must surrender their passports to the Director General of the Delhi Police within 15 days.
The contempt case is scheduled to come up on April 28, by which date Karnan J is expected to file his written submissions. It will be interesting to see if the apex court reaches the end of its tether before the end of that date. In any case, things do not look very bright for the former Madras High Court judge.