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Why No Final Decision Taken Against Judicial Officer Indicted Of Accepting Bribe Three Years Ago?: Punjab & Haryana HC Asks Registrar General

Aaratrika Bhaumik
11 Aug 2021 5:15 AM GMT
Why No Final Decision Taken Against Judicial Officer Indicted Of Accepting Bribe Three Years Ago?: Punjab & Haryana HC Asks Registrar General
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The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Friday enquired from its Registrar General as to why no final decision had been taken in respect of a judicial officer, who was found guilty of grave misconduct for accepting bribe while deciding a criminal case.The Additional District & Sessions Judge-cum-Special Judge, CBI, Patiala namely Hemant Gopal was charged for accepting illegal...

The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Friday enquired from its Registrar General as to why no final decision had been taken in respect of a judicial officer, who was found guilty of grave misconduct for accepting bribe while deciding a criminal case.

The Additional District & Sessions Judge-cum-Special Judge, CBI, Patiala namely Hemant Gopal was charged for accepting illegal monetary gratification while deciding a criminal case against the Appellant herein. Accordingly, he was suspended from service for acting in a manner unbecoming of a judicial officer. "You committed gross misconduct, acted against the judicial cannons, lowered the image of judiciary in the eyes of public," the allegations of charges stated.

In this backdrop, the Applicant herein had moved the High Court seeking stay on the operation of judgment of conviction passed by the (suspended) Special Judge.

It was alleged that the suspended judicial officer had demanded illegal monetary gratification to the tune of Rs 1 crore from the petitioner in lieu of passing an order of acquittal against him. He had further accepted illegal gratification of Rs. 40 Lakh from the co-accused Parminder Singh owing to which the co-accused had been acquitted.

The officer was found guilty of grave misconduct by the Enquiry Officer-cum-District & Sessions Judge, Panchkula, vide enquiry report dated 31.03.2018.

Furthermore, Sushil Kumar, Law Officer of the Department of Legal & Legislative Affairs had also facilitated the aforementioned payment of illegal gratification due to which he was also been found guilty vide enquiry report dated December 5, 2014.

The counsel for the Applicant submitted before the High Court that although judicial officer Hemant Gopal had been dismissed from service however the High Court had not yet taken any final decision in regards to the enquiry pending against him despite a lapse of 3 years.

Taking cognisance of the grievance raised, Justice Arvind Singh Sangwan issued notice to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and directed the agency to file its reply before the next date of hearing, i.e. August 24.

The Court added,

"In the meantime, the Registrar General of this Court is directed to submit a status report this Court as to why no final decision has been taken against the said Officer on the basis of the enquiry report dated 31.03.2018"

Case Title: Mangat Rai v CBI


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