The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed pleas seeking an independent probe into the death of special Central Bureau of Investigation judge B H Loya, ruling that the judge died of natural causes and the petitions were a 'serious attempt to scandalise and obstruct the course of justice'.
Here are five scathing remarks that the bench headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra made while rejecting the petitions.
Read the full judgment HERE (external link)
IMAGE: Lawyer and one of the petitioners Prashant Bhushan speaks to media person after the Supreme Court dismissed PILs seeking an independent probe into special judge B H Loya's death, in New Delhi on Thursday.Photograph: PTI Photo by Vijay Verma
'There is no reason for the court to doubt the clear and consistent statements of the four judicial officers. The documentary material on the record indicates that the death of Judge Loya was due to natural causes. There is no ground for the court to hold that there was a reasonable suspicion about the cause or circumstances of death which would merit a further inquiry.'
'The misuse of public interest litigation is a serious matter of concern for the judicial process. Both this court and the high courts are flooded with litigation and are burdened by arrears. Frivolous or motivated petitions, ostensibly invoking the public interest detract from the time and attention which courts must devote to genuine causes.'
'…such petitions pose a grave danger to the credibility of the judicial process. This has the propensity of endangering the credibility of other institutions and undermining public faith in democracy and the rule of law. This will happen when the agency of the court is utilised to settle extra-judicial scores. Business rivalries have to be resolved in a competitive market for goods and services. Political rivalries have to be resolved in the great hall of democracy when the electorate votes its representatives in and out of office. Courts resolve disputes about legal rights and entitlements. Courts protect the rule of law. There is a danger that the judicial process will be reduced to a charade, if disputes beyond the ken of legal parameters occupy the judicial space.'
'An aura of good faith has been sought to be created by submitting that the true purpose of seeking an inquiry into the circumstances relating to the death of Judge Loya is to protect the district judiciary. But as the submissions have evolved, it has become clear that the petition is a veiled attempt to launch a frontal attack on the independence of the judiciary and to dilute the credibility of judicial institutions.'
'Serious attacks have been made on the credibility of two judges of the Bombay high court. The conduct of the petitioners and the intervenors scandalises the process of the court and prima facie constitutes criminal contempt. However, on a dispassionate view of the matter, we have chosen not to initiate proceedings by way of criminal contempt if only not to give an impression that the litigants and the lawyers appearing for them have been subjected to an unequal battle with the authority of law.'