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‘Ridiculous order, who is Supreme Court to decide my mental state’: Justice Karnan

The Supreme Court on Monday constituted a medical board in Kolkata to examine the mental health of Calcutta High Court judge C S Karnan, who is facing contempt proceedings.
India TV News Desk New Delhi May 01, 2017 17:25 IST
India TV News Desk

Calcutta High Court Justice C.S. Karnan on Monday termed as "ridiculous" the apex court's order for conducting a medical examination on him, and instead ordered the Delhi Police to produce the seven apex court judges before a psychiatric board.

"The said order is a ridiculous order without proper application of mind in following appropriate procedures as required...the seven accused judges have desperately adopted this ridiculous order, in order to escape the punishment leviable via the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (prevention of) atrocity act," Karnan said, questioning the SC's locus standii in deciding his mental state.

"With their phenomenal behaviour, it is the said seven judges who actually require medical examination," he said.

He also directed the Delhi Police to present the seven accused judges before a psychiatric medical board under the AIIMS Hospital in Delhi and submit a report on or before May 7 after conducting "appropriate medical tests".

Earlier in the day, a seven-judge Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar directed the constitution of a medical board to examine Karnan on May 4 and submit the evaluation report on May 8.

"I further direct the Director General of Police, New Delhi to take all the seven accused judges and produce them to a psychiatric medical board attached to the AIIMS Hospital in New Delhi to conduct appropriate medical tests and submit a copy of the report on or before May 7," he added.

Justice Karnan further claimed that such an order is an "additional insult" to a Dalit judge like him, who is of "sound health and mind".

"This kind of harassment order against my sanity is an additional insult to an innocent Dalit judge who is of sound health and mind," he said.

Karnan is facing contempt charges for degrading the judiciary and making allegations of corruption against Supreme Court judges.

The Supreme Court on Monday constituted a medical board in Kolkata to examine the mental health of Karnan. The medical board to examine Justice Karnan will be set by the government hospital in Kolkata, and it will have to submit its report in the SC on or before May 8, the top court said. Accordingly, the matter has been posted for hearing on May 9. 

The apex court also directed the West Bengal DGP to set up a team of police officials to assist the medical board in examining Justice Karnan.

It has also asked Justice Karnan to file his response, if he wants to. In case Justice Karnan decides not to file his response, the court would presume that he has nothing to say, said the Supreme Court. 

Meanwhile, the apex court has also directed all courts, tribunals, commissions across the country against considering any order passed by Justice Karnan after February 8, the date it restrained him from taking up judicial work.  

The move comes after Justice Karnan defied the Supreme Court once again by not appearing before it on Monday. 

Karnan, who is set to retire in June, was stripped of his judicial and administrative powers by the Supreme Court on February 8.

In an unprecedented order, the Supreme Court had issued the arrest warrant against Justice Karnan to ensure his presence before it on March 31 in a contempt case.

Taking serious note of the blatant defiance shown by Justice CS Karnan to the Supreme Court’s directions, the latter had asked the Kolkata judge if he was mentally fit.

On April 13, Justice Karnan had passed a suo-moto order against Chief Justice of India JS Khehar and six other Supreme Court judges, 'directing' them to appear before him on April 28.

 

Justice Karnan, a sitting High Court judge who has been stripped of his powers by the apex court, had “ruled” that seven Supreme Court judges - Chief Justice J S Khehar along with Justices Dipak Misra, J Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan B Lokur, Pinaki Chandra Ghose and Kurian Joseph -- were "offenders" under the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes Atrocities Act and “should not be permitted to travel outside of India.”

The seven judges had issued a suo motu contempt order against Karnan in February after he had in January named 20 "corrupt judges", seeking probe against them to curb "high corruption" in the Indian judiciary.