Justice C S Karnan is in the thick of controversies yet again after the Supreme Court today directed Madras High Court Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul not to allot him any more judicial work
This was after the Madras High Court Registrar General and PS to the CJ Kaul through senior lawyer K K Venugopal amidst high drama submitted before a bench headed by Justice J S Khehar that Justice Karnan has sent a word that he will suo motu stay Chief Justice of India T S Thakur’s letter tranferring him to Calcutta High Court
According to latest reports Justice Karnan has stayed his own transfer order after which Venugopal mentioned the matter again. The SC has agreed to modify its earlier order.
The affidavit said when the Madras HC Registar General went to Justice Karnan’s house he was lying down on a sofa at home and hurled at him choicest abuse in Tamil and also asked him “how dare you transfer me to calcutta ?”
Read the order from the bench headed by justice J S Khehar : “The Registrar-cum-Personal Secretary of Chief Justice of Madras High Court has filed an affidavit. The same reveals that Justcie Karnan is in receipt of his transfer order. On account of the fact that he has received his transfer order, we find it just and appropriate to direct to allow the Chief Justice not to assign any further judicial work to him. A copy of this order shall be furnished to the judge It shall be open for Justice Karnan to enter appearance before this court in the pending matter at his own cost”.
The Supreme Court Collegium -- a panel of senior judges headed by the Chief Justice of India -- has recommended mass transfer of High Court judges who have been accused of corruption and misconduct. Judges from the High Courts of Delhi, Karnataka, Madras and Andhra Pradesh figure in the transfer list, sources said.
Karnan had hit headlines recently also when a Chennai-based advocate has moved the Supreme Court seeking initiation of such proceedings against a Madras high court judge.
The application was filed by advocate E G Rejendran against Justice Karnan, who had plunged Madras HC into a huge crisis by threatening contempt of court proceedings against Chief Justice Sanjay K Kaul by accusing him of interfering in his judicial work and seeking a CBI probe into alleged forged educational qualification of another HC judge.
Apart from contempt of court action, Justice Karnan had also threatened to ask the National Commission on Scheduled Castes to initiate a detailed inquiry against the HC chief justice for harassing him, a member of the Dalit community, and also slapping a case against the chief justice under stringent provisions of SC/ST Atrocities (Prevention) Act.
A beleaguered HC then also rushed to the SC accusing Justice Karnan of judicial indiscipline, challenging the authority of the HC chief justice, passing order without jurisdiction and lacking in self-restraint. The SC had on May 11 restrained Justice Karnan from initiating any action against the chief justice.
Read the order here.