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1 lakh fine for questioning continuance of judge

Legal Correspondent


Court questions as to how withdrawal of resignation by a judge would cause harm to the public or petitioner


HYDERABAD: A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Nissar Ahmad Kakru and Justice Vilas V. Afzalpurkar of the High Court on Thursday dismissed the writ petition filed questioning the continuance of a judge who submitted his resignation recently and withdrew it within two days. The petitioner was asked to pay Rs 1 lakh as exemplary costs.

The petition was filed by Chandrasekhara Reddy, a practising advocate of Medak district. Arguing the case himself, he contended that Justice C. V. Nagarjuna Reddy resigned the post of High Court judge and then withdrew it. He averred that such withdrawal was not legally permissible.

Objection to tone

Speaking through the Chief Justice, the Bench declared that “the letter of resignation had not at all commenced its journey to the President of India.” It did not appreciate the tone and tenor of the writ petition. “We are really at a loss to understand as to how withdrawal of resignation by the judge would cause any harm to the public or to the petitioner.” The letter of resignation and the latter correspondence and the final orders by the Chief Justice were extracted in the judgment. The incidents wherein the advocates ransacked the court hall insisting for a boycott, etc were mentioned in detail.

Frivolous grounds

The Bench concluded “petitioner seeks ouster of the judge on frivolous grounds without any fault attributable to the judge and if such an unhealthy practice is allowed to go unchecked, an independent judiciary, a recognised key pillar of the rule of law, cannot be expected to discharge its constitutional duty without fear.”

“Be that as it may, we find that the writ petition is filed on wrong factual foundation and in a very causal manner.

All the facts taken together, lack of bonafides on the part of the petitioner is manifest, therefore, we saddle him with costs quantified at Rs.1,00,000, payable to the A.P. State Legal Services Authority within 30 days.

On failure to do so, the direction relating to costs shall be executed as a decree.”

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