Facing contempt of court proceedings, defiant Calcutta High Court judge C.S. Karnan on Tuesday issued a non-bailable warrant against seven Supreme Court judges, including the Chief Justice of India JS Khehar.
Karnan, who has been barred from attending office at the high court, issued a "suo moto" judicial order from his Kolkata residence. Passing the order, he also stated that it was in the "interest of the nation to protect the general public from corruption and unrest".
HERE IS ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW
- "The Registrar General (of) High Court at Calcutta is directed to issue the non-bailable warrant to the above-named accused(seven Supreme Court judges) to be executed through the Director General of Police or Commissioner of Police of New Delhi", Justice Karnan stated in his order.
- Apart from Chief Justice Khehar, the order names Justices Dipak Misra, J. Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan B. Lokur, Pinaki Chandr Ghose and Kurian Joseph, all of whom are members of the bench that had earlier issued contempt notice against him.
- In an earlier order, Karnan had asked all the seven Supreme Court Judges to be present in person before his court. However on Tuesday, he called all the "accused" judges "absent" in his latest order.
- While issuing the order, Justice Karnan invoked Article 226 of the Constitution (and read that with Section 482 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC)).
- This comes just a day after the seven-judge bench at the apex court ordered a medical examination for Justice Karnan to ascertain his mental health.
- The order has directed the West Bengal Director General of Police to ensure that the tests are conducted by an expert panel of doctors in Kolkata.
- Interestingly, the Supreme Court had earlier directed all the authorities in the country not to obey any order passed by Justice Karnan, given that contempt of court proceedings had been initiated against him.
- The seven-judge Supreme Court bench had initiated contempt of court proceedings against Justice Karnan, after he wrote to the Chief Justice of India, the Prime Minister's Office, the Union Law Ministry and others levelling corruption charges against several top judges.
- The apex court, in an unprecedented move, had issued a bailable warrant against the sitting Calcutta High Court judge in March to ensure his presence before the court after his repeated non-appearance.