Saturday, September 11, 2010

Justice Sen case: panel submits report to Ansari

The Justice B. Sudershan Reddy Committee that probed “misappropriation” charges against Calcutta High Court Judge Soumitra Sen in the removal proceedings initiated by Parliament submitted its report to Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari on Friday.

The committee, which has Punjab and Haryana High Court Chief Justice Mukul Mudgal and jurist Fali Nariman as members, had reserved its verdict after the final arguments, and it was scheduled to finalise the report by August 5. However, the panel's term was extended by two months till October 5. The committee was constituted by Mr. Ansari under Section 3 (2) of the Judges (Inquiry) Act, 1968, on March 20, 2009, “for the purpose of making an investigation into the grounds on which the removal of Justice Sen of the Calcutta High Court is prayed for, through a Motion by Sitaram Yechury and 56 other members of Rajya Sabha.”

As per the provisions of the Act, the report will be laid before each House in the next session. The charge against Justice Sen was that when he was a lawyer, he collected Rs.33,22,800 from the purchaser of goods and kept it in a savings bank account and misrepresented facts to the High Court.

The case is the second in the history of the country in which Parliament has initiated proceedings for removal of a judge. The first involved Justice V. Ramaswami.

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