Justice D.V. Shylendra Kumar of the Karnataka High Court, who took the lead among judges in declaring his assets and liabilities on the Net, has clarified that a meeting of judges he called here on December 19, 2009 was not intended to be a gathering of rebels.

The meeting was called to discuss the propriety, desirability and justification of the Chief Justice (P.D. Dinakaran) not discharging his judicial functions but continuing to exercise powers and authority on the administrative side, he said.

In an article, posted on the Net, Justice Kumar said the Chief Justice had declined permission for a meeting of all judges. As an alternative, the judge said, he circulated a letter among his colleagues telling them that they could debate the topic as part of their ‘study circle’ meetings.

A study circle meeting is an informal, in-house session to discuss legal issues of topical importance and legal issues of complications on which there could be divergent opinions, and to examine critically judgments of the High Courts and the Supreme Court.

Unfortunately, Justice Kumar said, the message perhaps did not reach his colleagues in its true spirit. With the Registrar having told “my colleagues that the meeting had been shot down by the Chief Justice, most of my colleagues were under the impression that the cover containing my letter with information about the study circle meeting was only about the meeting that had been aborted and therefore naturally there was not much response.”

Even otherwise, study circle meetings were not that popular as the maximum participation by judges never exceeded 15 anytime, and on occasions it was just 3 or 4. On December 19, 2009, “it was not much different, with five of us having an informal discussion about the topic.

This was not a meeting to pass any resolution, but only to enlighten ourselves with a little study beforehand. Unfortunately, in the absence of a proper communication and information, the media has projected the meeting as a rebel meeting to pass a resolution against the Chief Justice, etc., which was neither the purpose nor is a thing that can be achieved in this manner.”

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