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‘Restore My Work Or Won’t Appear Next Time, Send Me To Jail: Justice Karnan To Court

NEW DELHI: Calcutta High Court’s Justice CS Karnan – whose refusal to turn up before the Supreme Court to face contempt proceedings had led the top court to issue a bailable warrant against him – has appeared before the court’s seven-judge bench on Friday.

Justice Karnan, 61, who argued his case before the bench headed by Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar, however, was as defiant in the court and told the seven-judge bench to restore his administrative and judicial work “unilaterally” taken away from him in February.

“Restore my work or next time, I will not appear before your court,” the judge said, adding the court was free to “send me to jail… I am not a terrorist or anti-social person”.

The Supreme Court refused to allow Justice Karnan to resume his duties at the high court and ordered him to furnish his reply within four weeks. “We can see that his mind (Justice Karnan) is not clear and he is not able to comprehend what he is doing,” the Bench observed.
Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, however, added: “There is no question of non-comprehension, he is very clear”

The Court had initiated the contempt proceedings after the judge sought a probe against 20 “corrupt judges” to curb “high corruption” in the judiciary.

On Friday, the bench gave the judge an opportunity to withdraw his complaint. “Do you stand by your complaint against the 20 judges? Or do you wish to withdraw your complaint and unconditionally apologise,” the bench asked him.

He refused the offer, insisting that the complaint he had given “was very much under the law”. The court, shot back: “Despite being a judge you don’t know the procedure.”

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