New Delhi, April 24: The Supreme Court on Wednesday signaled its determination to get to the bottom of the claims by a lawyer who alleged there was a larger conspiracy to force Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi to resign and threaten every top court judge.
“We shall enquire, enquire and enquire till we get to the root of the issue,” a three-judge bench said on Wednesday afternoon. The judges had taken up lawyer Utsav Bains’ affidavit – which claimed more incriminating evidence about the conspiracy – early in the day. The judges had then expressed concern at allegations leveled by the lawyer who claimed to have access to CCTV footage to back up some of his claims. The bench expressed its concern at the nature of the allegations and summoned chiefs of the intelligence bureau, probe agency CBI and Delhi Police for a meeting in their chambers at 12.30 pm.
When the court hearing resumed at 3 pm, the judges told Utsav Bains to file another affidavit after he claimed to have more incriminating evidence about the larger conspiracy against Chief Justice Gogoi.
“We will inquire and go to the root of alleged claims of fixers at work and manipulating the judiciary. If they continue to work then none of us will survive… Fixing has no role to play in the system. We will inquire and take it to the logical end,” said the bench led by Justice Arun Mishra and comprising justices Rohintan Fali Nariman and Deepak Gupta.
The lawyer’s allegation about a larger conspiracy to target the country’s senior-most judges coincides with a sexual harassment case filed by a former court staffer against Chief Justice Gogoi. The country’s top judge had last week held a special hearing where he had referred to the complaint and described it as an attempt to deactivate the office of the CJI. The Chief Justice has since then set up a three-judge committee led by Justice SA Bobde to look into the sexual harassment accusation that he faces. This panel will meet on Friday.
Justice Arun Mishra clarified that there was no connection between Wednesday’s hearing into the lawyer’s allegations of a conspiracy against the CJI and the three-judge panel’s probe into harassment charge.
Earlier during the court, Justice Mishra had lauded the Chief Justice for sacking two court clerks who had made changes to a court order on the personal appearance of a corporate tycoon. “This has been happening but no Chief Justice had the courage to take such action. But now action was being taken without fear,” he said, according to news agency PTI. (Agencies)