Thursday, January 31, 2019

Lawyer fined for seeking prosecution of CBI judge

A city sessions court fined an advocate Rs 25,000 for seeking the prosecution of a sitting CBI judge after the latter rejected an application. The lawyer has a habit of seeking the criminal prosecution of judges, the court said.

The lawyer, in this case, is Devesh Bhatt, whose client filed an application for the prosecution of special CBI judge J K Pandya. Additional sessions judge Prerana Chauhan also ordered the registry to send a report to the chairman of the Bar Council of Gujarat for appropriate action against Bhatt for his conduct, under the provisions of Section 15 of the Advocates Act. The court fined the applicant Rs 25,000 as well, public prosecutor Sudhir Brahmbhatt said.

CBI judge Pandya had turned down a demand for further investigation in connection with graft charges earlier this month. Bhatt’s client, the TaxPayers Protection Council, demanded Pandya’s prosecution before the city sessions court for passing an order which could jeopardize the public interest and cause losses to the exchequer.

The sessions court refused to buy Bhatt’s argument and noted that the law gives the judicial immunity when he passes an order as part of his judicial function. The court noted Bhatt’s past behaviour and observed that Bhatt is “habitual of making frivolous complaints against judges”. He had filed a complaint against a former high court judge. The high court took suo motu contempt of court action in 2018 and issued a nonbailable warrant against Bhatt. He has used another person as a tool against the court to make such allegations and file a criminal complaint, which has shaken the credibility and dignity of the judiciary.

The court further said that Bhatt has a habit of tarnishing the image of judges and he then remains absent before courts. This cannot be taken lightly. The court termed it “unfortunate”.
The court further said that it is the duty of advocates to respect judges as well as respect judicial decisions rendered by judges and they should avoid making such type of frivolous prosecution requests as they are also officers of the court and part of the judicial system.

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