Karnan Changes Tact, Makes Up With SC Judges

Madras HC judge writes to CJI, explains his conduct leading to erroneous order; cites 2 incidents that disturbed him and resulted in the action

Published: 24th February 2016 04:53 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th February 2016 04:53 AM   |  A+A-

NEW DELHI: Madras High Court judge Justice Karnan on Tuesday wrote to the Chief Justice of India, Justice J S Khehar and Justice R Banumathi explaining his conduct leading to an erroneous order in violation of the stay order by the Supreme Court.

In his letter, Justice Karnan admitted that the order was a result of his “mental frustration resulting in the loss of his mental balance”. He cited two incidents that had actually disturbed him and resulted in passing of the judicial order. “One was an incident that occurred during a marriage reception when a brother judge kicked me and later apologised. In another incident, the same judge allegedly removed the armchair reservation slip on my chair, threw it on the ground and trampled it with his feet. The same was noticed by a brother and sister judge who silently ridiculed me,” the two-page letter read.

Karnan.jpgJustice Karnan went on to state that he was already pursuing the complaint regarding it with the SC/ ST chairman and the incident was widely reported in the media. He said though he was asked to reveal the identity of the judge, he did not do so in the interest of the sanctity of the judiciary and to maintain communal harmony. “Now I am constrained to point out these past unfortunate happenings only because I maintain a very social outlook in the mainstream of the society and owe my allegiance to the high reputation of our prestigious court.”

The letter ends with an assurance that he will foster a harmonious attitude to one and all. “Hereinafter, I will still continue to foster a harmonious attitude to one and all, and will appreciate your kind reciprocation and oblige.”

Justice Karnan has also sent his letter to the President, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Law Minister, and Sonia Gandhi.

Last week, in an unprecedented development, Justice Karnan had stayed the CJI’s order transferring him to the  Calcutta High Court. However, the stay became ineffective as an apex court bench had said that any order, be it administrative or judicial, passed by Justice Karnan after he was transferred to the  Calcutta High court would stand stayed until further orders.

The apex court had on May 11 last year stayed an interim order passed by Justice Karnan, allegedly undermining the authority of Madras HC Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, in a case relating to appointment of officers of the lower judiciary.

Justice Karnan had stated in the letters that he was suo motu staying the administrative order of the Chief Justice with regard to selection of civil judges.


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