A day after his allegations that three former Chief Justices of India made 'improper compromises' to keep on an improper judge stirred a national storm, Justice Markandey Katju posed six questions to one of the Chief Justices, Justice R C Lahoti.
In his blog posted on Tuesday, Justice Katju, chairman of the Press Council of India, confronts Justice Lahoti with the following questions:
1. Is it , or is it not, correct that I first wrote him a letter from Chennai, stating that there were serious allegations of corruption about an Additional Judge of Madras High Court, and therefore he ( Justice Lahoti ) should get a secret intelligence enquiry held against that Additional Judge, and thereafter I personally met Justice Lahoti at Delhi and again requested for a secret IB enquiry against the Additional Judge about whom I had received several complaints, and from several sources, that he was indulging in corruption ?
2. Is it, or is it not, correct that on my request Justice Lahoti ordered a secret IB enquiry against that Judge?
3. Is it, or is it not correct, that a few weeks after I personally met him in Delhi and then returned to Chennai, he telephoned me from Delhi ( while I was at Chennai ) and told me that the IB, after thorough enquiry, gave a report that indeed the Judge was indulging in corruption?
4. Is it, or is it not, correct that after receiving the adverse IB report against the Additional Judge, Justice Lahoti, who was then Chief Justice of India, called a meeting of the 3 Judge Supreme Court Collegium, consisting of himself, Justice Sabarwal, and Justice Ruma Pal, and the 3 Judge Collegium, having perused the IB report recommended to the Government of India not to extend the 2 year term of that Additional Judge?
5. Is it, or is it not, correct that after that recommendation of the 3 Judge Collegium of the Supreme Court was sent to the Government of India, he (Justice Lahoti ), on his own, without consulting his 2 other Supreme Court Collegium colleagues, wrote a letter to the Government of India asking the Government to give another 1 year term as Additional Judge to the concerned Judge ?
6. If indeed the IB reported, after an enquiry, that the Judge was indulging in corruption, why did he ( Justice Lahoti ) recommend to the Government of India to give that corrupt Judge another term of 1 year as Additional Judge in the High Court ?
Some people have commented about the timing of my statement. What happened was that some Tamilians had commented on Facebook that I am posting several matters on my Facebook post, so I should also post some of my experiences in Madras High Court. Then I started posting about my experiences there, and it was at time I remembered this experience too, and posted it.
Image: Press Council of India chairman Justice Katju
Read: Justice Katju’s blog here