A Judge of the Madras High Court, who has complained to the National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) that he had been “harassed” by some brother Judges as he was a Dalit, on Thursday said some former Judges of the court also faced similar problems during their tenure.
Justice C.S. Karnan had filed a complaint with the NCSC that he was being “harassed” and “victimised” by other Judges.
Talking to newspersons here on Thursday, he said such harassment was going on since 2009 when he became a Judge. With a view to maintaining the dignity of the court, he was putting up with the problems. Asked whether he had made a complaint to the High Court Chief Justice about his grievance, he replied there was no necessity to give a complaint to the Chief Justice. The NCSC, whose Chairman was under the President, was an independent body which looked into the problems faced by members of Scheduled Castes. It was there to protect them and it was the competent/appropriate authority.
Answering a volley of questions, he said he had not given the names of the Judges who humiliated him in the complaint. He faced such experience at functions, high tea, lunch, Full Court meetings and wherever Judges assembled. He made it clear that it was not all Judges who meted out such a treatment.
To a question, he said “I am a Judge with self-respect. So I am facing the difficulties.” He said the change of portfolio for him attracted negative comments against him. That had nothing to do with the complaint. Some of the Judges try to dominate Dalit Judges. In his case, such an attempt failed.
Mr. Justice Karnan said he would continue to carry on with his duties as a Judge. He said Judges should be broad-minded and magnanimous.
His request to the Commission was to conduct an enquiry and he was prepared to face an open enquiry.
Mr. Justice Karnan met Chief Justice, M.Y. Eqbal this morning. He said nothing about the issue. In a statement titled “My submission to the public,” the Judge said he had “levelled a case against certain Honourable brothers and sister judges of the Madras High Court” before the NCSC against “certain atrocities towards me: due to my being a Dalit judge.” It was his responsibility to establish and vindicate his complaint at the enquiry and exonerate himself as a Judge. He requested the public to abstain from any speculation and comments until the enquiry was over in order to maintain the high dignity of the High Court.