Sunday, December 04, 2022

Government’s new trend of defaming judges unfortunate: CJI

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 8

Buoyed by some allegations leveled against the judiciary, the Supreme Court on Friday said the new practice by governments to defame judges if judicial decisions are not to their liking is “unfortunate”.

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India NV Ramana while hearing petitions filed by Chhattisgarh government and an activist challenging the state high court’s decision to quash an FIR against a former IAS officer in a disproportionate assets case. Commented this.

Property case against former IAS officer

  • The CJI-led bench made the remarks against the government after hearing a petition challenging the Chhattisgarh HC’s decision in a property case against a former IAS officer.
  • “Don’t normalize people like this. Tomorrow when the government changes and another government comes, lakhs become thousands…”

“Whatever fight you fight, that’s fine. But don’t try to defame the courts. I see in this court also, it’s a new trend.”

As senior advocate Rakesh Dwivedi, representing the state government, said he was not pressing “that point” at all, the CJI said, “No, we are looking into it every day. You are a senior advocate, You have seen it more than us. This is a new trend. The government has started defaming the judges. It is unfortunate.”

Dwivedi said Aman Kumar Singh, who had joined the service in 2004, resigned and became secretary on contract basis and his officer wife also followed the same pattern. When the officer entered service he had an asset worth Rs 11 lakh and later became the owner of seven properties 2.76 crore, he said.

Senior advocate Siddharth Dave, appearing for activist Proper Sharma, submitted that the HC’s decision to quash the FIR was based on probability. He said that the allegation was accumulating disproportionate assets and the investigation would be closed automatically if the person concerned told about the assets.

Fixing the matter for further hearing on April 18, the bench said, “On the basis of presumption and your allegations, we cannot allow such harassment.”

As Dave insisted that the investigation was not based on conjecture as there were allegations that the officer in question had deposited Rs 2,500 crore, the Bench observed that the appeal was an exaggeration.

“Don’t normalize people like this. Tomorrow when the government changes and another government comes, lakhs become thousands…”

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