CHENNAI: It is very unfortunate that three former judges of the Madras High Court have participated in the rally organised by advocates on Martyrs Day, which allegedly did not have police permission, the first bench comprising chief justice AP Sahi and justice Subramonium Prasad bemoaned Friday.
The bench made the observation while hearing petitions relating to deployment of CISF personnel on a permanent basis in the High Court came up for hearing.
Retired High Court judges GM Akbar Ali, D Hariparanthaman and K Kannan participated in the event organised on Martyrs Day, the death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, by several leading and senior advocates inside the High Court campus. Participants in the rally are said to have carried placards printed with the preamble of the Constitution and portraits of Mahatma Gandhi and Ambedkar.
When the judges sat at the First Court on Friday, the Chief Justice told the audience: "A very unfortunate incident has been reported by the Deputy Commissioner of Police, High Court Security, in a letter dated January 30." The letter alleged that the rally was carried out without permission from the police.
"What is of more concern is that the incident involves and names three former HC judges of having entered the premises and joined the protests that was going on. The gravity of the said incident, therefore, puts on guard the entire judicial system, as this may have a large impact on the future security measures that may be required to be undertaken by the High Court," the bench said.
"The incident, therefore, requires an immediate concern to be taken up on the administrative side and we, therefore, request the Security Committee of the High Court to take up the matter urgently along with its suggestions and report the matter back for taking appropriate action on the judicial side or otherwise by the next date fixed," he said.
Reacting to the development justice Kannan told Express: "If observance of Martyrs Day and holding placards reiterating faith in democracy can be maligned, it's pathetic." Justice Hariparanthaman said that there was nothing wrong in carrying placards containing the preamble of the Constitution.
When contacted, retired HC judge K Chandru, who didn’t take part, said: "Did Gandhi stage pre-Independence agitations after taking permission from the British government? Let police register criminal cases, we will establish our rights."