“Justice Ganguly should not retire on the basis of allegations”
Opposing the clamour for resignation of Justice (retired) Asok Kumar Ganguly from the post of chairperson of the West Bengal Human Rights Commission in the wake of allegations of sexual harassment by a woman law intern, State’s former Lokayukta Samaresh Banerjee said on Wednesday that the retired judge should not resign.
“I do no think that Justice Ganguly should resign just on the basis of allegations,” Justice Banerjee, himself a retired High Court judge told The Hindu.
Referring to former Attorney General Soli Sorabjee’s views that Justice Ganguly’s resignation would set dangerous a precedent, Justice Banerjee said: “Nobody can be condemned unheard.”
“An integral part of the Rule of Law which we keep taking about is nobody should be condemned unheard. In this case, it seems that it is already decided that Justice Ganguly is guilty,” he said.
Expressing his surprise that a section of politicians were raising the demand for Justice Ganguly’s resignation, Justice Banerjee said he wanted to ask whether the politicians would apply the same yardstick to themselves if allegations were levelled against them.
“Throughout my life I worked honestly and after that if somebody levels allegation against me then can I be held guilty,” he quipped.
Justice Banerjee said the “prescribed procedure” of law should be followed when allegations were being made.
His remarks come at a time when Justice Ganguly has written to the Chief Justice of India raising questions on the apex court panel that prime facie held that allegations against him disclose an act of unwelcome behaviour.
While Justice Ganguly had said there had been concerted efforts to malign his image, the law intern had taken exception to the political conspiracy charge and said she would decide on pursuing appropriate criminal proceedings against Justice Ganguly at an appropriate time.
Justice Ganguly has however maintained his silence since writing the letter to the CJI on December 23.