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"Approach SG': AG Recuses From Dealing With Plea For Sanction To Initiate Contempt Proceedings Against Justice Katju Over His Remarks In Nirav Modi Case

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
30 March 2021 11:47 AM GMT
Approach SG: AG Recuses From Dealing With Plea For Sanction To Initiate Contempt Proceedings Against Justice Katju Over His Remarks In Nirav Modi Case
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The Attorney General for India KK Venugopal recused himself to grant consent to initiate criminal contempt of proceedings against former Supreme Court Judge, Justice Markandey Katju for making alleged contemptuous remarks inthe Nirav Modi Extradition case. The AG said that he has known Justice Katju for over sixteen years and thus, it may not be appropriate for him to take any...

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The Attorney General for India KK Venugopal recused himself  to grant consent to initiate criminal contempt of proceedings against former Supreme Court Judge, Justice Markandey Katju for making alleged contemptuous remarks inthe Nirav Modi Extradition case.

The AG said that he has known Justice Katju for over sixteen years and thus, it may not be appropriate for him to take any action in this matter.

He suggested the applicant, Advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava, to approach the Attorney General or the Solicitor General of India seeking their consent under Section 15(3), if so advised.

The AG said,

"I have gone through your application for consent to initiate proceedings for criminal contempt against Justice (retd.) Markandey Katju.

I have to point out that I have known Justice Katju for the last about 16 years and we have been interacting with each other ever since. In this background it is not appropriate that I deal with the matter.

I am bringing to your notice Explanation (a) to Section 15(3) which empowers either the Attorney General or the Solicitor General of India to grant consent for initiating criminal contempt proceedings if deemed fit. If so advised, you may file your application for consent before the Solicitor General of India, Sh. Tushar Mehta."

Srivastava had written to the AG earlier this month stating that Justice Katju has scandalized the Indian Supreme Court by stating before a Court in UK that the institution has "practically surrendered before the Indian Government".

He alleged that such contemptuous statements has lowered the authority of the Supreme Court before a Court of UK and has brought disrepute to administration of justice in India.

In evidence before a UK Court in connection with the Nirav Modi Extradition case, Justice Katju had allegedly stated that Indian Courts have become politicised.

In his letter, Srivastava referred to the judgment of a District Court of the United Kingdom that rejected the challenge made by fugitive Nirav Deepak Modi against his extradition to India.

The said order records that Justice Katju submitted that in recent years the Supreme Court in India has "practically surrendered before the Indian Government and is doing its bidding and is not acting as an independent organ of the state protecting the rights of the people as it was supposed to be" and in his view the "Indian judiciary has largely surrendered before the political executive".

The order further stated,

"He gives example of a case heard by the Supreme Court which in his view have been perversely decided and the Chief Justice was "simply doing the bidding of the Indian Government. He has been rewarded as a quid pro quo by being nominated as a member of Parliament after retirement"

Srivastava alleged that these statements are capable of undermining the dignity and authority of the Chief Justice of Indian in eyes of public at large.


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