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Justice Manjunath hits out at Supreme Court collegium

Advocates Association Bengaluru President H.C. Shivaramu greets Justice K.L.Manjunath. Also seen are Chief Justice of Karnataka D.H. Waghela at Vidhanasoudha Banquet Hall in Bengaluru on Monday. Photo: Sudhakara Jain

Advocates Association Bengaluru President H.C. Shivaramu greets Justice K.L.Manjunath. Also seen are Chief Justice of Karnataka D.H. Waghela at Vidhanasoudha Banquet Hall in Bengaluru on Monday. Photo: Sudhakara Jain  

Raising questions about his non-elevation as Chief Justice of a High Court, Justice K.L. Manjunath of the Karnataka High Court on Monday questioned the Supreme Court’s collegium that whether a judge can be punished without making known to him the nature of the allegations.

Terming the allegations levelled against him as “false”, he questioned the manner in which the apex court’s collegium dealt with the allegations levelled against him at different stages.

“Whether the Supreme Court [collegium] can keep the file pending for more than 10 months without taking any decision? If really the charges were true, was there any difficulty for the Supreme Court to close my file holding that I am not entitled for any elevation,” Justice Manjunath asked.

Read >Justice Manjunath's speech here

Addressing the judges and the members of the Bar in a ceremonial farewell given to him on his retirement, Justice Manjunath wanted to know whether a judge of the Supreme Court can play with the life of the judges of the High Court. Whether the principles of natural justice need not be followed by the Hon’ble collegium?” said Justice Manjunath reading out his 31-page written speech.

“Ultimately, the moral of my story is there no place for integrity and honesty and there is no justice to a judge in this country. Several tempting offers were made to me; I did not succumb to any temptation during my career as a judge. Had I succumbed to one such temptation I would have been elsewhere,” he added.

Justice Manjunath’s name was considered for the post of Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court by the collegium. However, the proposal was returned by the Centre following objections raised by a Supreme Court judge.

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Printable version | Aug 9, 2020 5:11:53 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/justice-manjunath-hits-out-at-supreme-court-collegium/article7123096.ece

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