Moily, ASG join the chorus for the probe

Pressure mounted on the Supreme Court on Saturday to investigate the sexual harassment complaint against another retired judge of the Bench.

From Union Minister for Environment and Forests M. Veerappa Moily and Additional Solicitor-General Indira Jaising to the CPI(M), the chorus for the apex court to step in grew louder.

A former student of the National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata, alleged in November last year that she was harassed by the judge while interning with him in the Supreme Court in 2011.

Mr. Moily, in an interview to a TV channel, said “it was up to the Supreme Court to decide whether to probe the allegations.”

‘Challenge ruling’

Ms. Jaising told The Hindu that the Supreme Court’s decision of December 5 not to entertain any more complaints against retired judges needed to be challenged.

Chief Justice of India P. Sathasivam has reportedly informed the complainant that he could not do anything because of the court’s decision.

Echoing Ms. Jaising, Communist Party of India (Marxist) Polit Bureau member Brinda Karat said the court should have a mechanism where complaints against judges could be dealt with.

“The question will arise why the court is not implementing its own [Vishakha] judgment when it concerns one of its own. The Supreme Court should lead by example and set up such a mechanism to strengthen the process of justice,” Ms. Karat said.

The Hindu tried to contact the judge to get his version but got no response. The Bar Association of the National Green Tribunal, which he now chairs, decided not to join the demand for his resignation.

“Demanding the resignation of the chairperson based on a one-sided assertion in an affidavit tantamounts to mob-lynching,” it said.

‘Don’t jump the gun’

Former Law Minister and Rajya Sabha member Ram Jethmalani said: “First of all Supreme Court judges are also human beings. Please don’t jump into any conclusion that all men tell lies and all women speak the truth. The media should not blow up the issue as it will prejudice one party or the other.”

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