- Apprentice Lawyer
The State government on Wednesday undertook before the Madras High Court to file an additional status report on the ongoing investigation against former High Court Judge, CS Karnan, who was arrested recently for allegedly abusive remarks made against women and the judiciary in videos that went viral on social media.
Another pending charge against Karnan concerns an alleged attempt to barge into the residence of retired Supreme Court Judge, Justice R Banumathi.
Senior Advocate S Prabakaran, assisted by Advocate CK Chandarasekaran, appeared for the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu which had moved the High Court over the slow response of the police in the matter.
During arguments yesterday, Prabakaran pointed out that if preventive measures had been taken at the earliest, Karnan would not have uploaded more controversial videos on account of which incalculable damage has been done to the majesty, dignity and honour of the Supreme Court and the High Court.
Appearing for the State, Advocate General Vijay Narayan told the Court that Karnan has been arrested and a chargesheet has been filed in Crime No.294 of 2020 on December 12 before the Court of III Metropolitan Magistrate, George Town, Chennai. He further assured that a thorough investigation would be conducted by the police into the role played by any others in the case.
An additional status report with additional supporting documents would be submitted on this aspect, the AG undertook before the Court. Public Prosecutor A Natarajan and Additional Public Prosecutor S Karthikeyan also appeared for the State.
In the course of submissions, the Bench of Justices M Sathyanarayanan and P Rajamanickam also took note that there appeared to be separate offences that would lie against Karnan for his alleged misdeeds. The order reads,
"... though Mr.C.S.Karnan, along with 5 other persons said to have barged into the house of the Hon'ble Mrs.Justice R.Banumathi, a retired Judge of the Hon'ble Supreme Court, which resulted in registration of the case by Tiruvanmiyur Police Station in Crime No.1400 of 2020 for the commission of the offences under Sections 294-B and 448 of IPC, nothing has been done and something started moving only after this Court had seized up the matter ... As argued by the learned Senior counsel appearing for the petitioner, various complaints given by the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu as to the alleged illegal acts / misdeeds done by the accused, prima facie appear to constitute separate offences ..."
In response, the State assured that necessary action in accordance with the law would be taken at the earliest.
The physical presence of the Director-General of Police and the Commissioner of Police, present before the Court on Wednesday in line with earlier directions issued shortly before Karnan's arrest, was dispensed with.
The matter will be heard in physical court next on January 1, 2021.
Karnan had served as a judge of the Madras and Calcutta High Courts, before he was held guilty of contempt of Court by the Supreme Court for making unfounded allegations against the judges of the top court. He was sentenced to six months imprisonment in that case and was released from prison in December 2017.
On November 10, the Court had directed that derogatory remarks made by CS Karnan be blocked from social media.
Read the order: