Jharkhand judge’s death: colleagues in Kerala change profile photos in protest

Judicial officers in Kerala changed their social media profile photos in response to a call from their counterparts in Jharkhand.  

Judicial officers across the State changed their digital profile photos mourning the death of Uttam Anand, the judicial officer of Jharkhand, who was fatally hit by a vehicle a day ago.

The officers changed their profile picture of social media accounts, including Facebook and WhatApp, to that of a lit black candle with a black ribbon wrapped around it.

‘A deliberate act’

Condemning the incident, the All India Judges Association noted that the incident, as seen from CCTV footage and media reports, primarily seemed a “deliberate act of causing death, probably to keep him away from discharging his duty to deliver justice independently.”

Uttam Anand, an Additional District and Sessions Judge of Dhanbad, Jharkhand, died after being hit by a vehicle on the early hours of July 28. The judge was hearing two murder cases and another case on illegal transportation of coal.

The association also expressed “concern over the security of the judges of the trial court judiciary as many incidents are reported of assault on judges with an attempt to deviate them from performing the judicial functions independently,” some times by criminals and litigants.

In its resolution, the Kerala Judicial Officers’ Association resolved to request the Kerala High Court and the State government to step up the security of judges of the district judiciary.

The incident, according to V.P.M. Suresh Babu, the president-in-charge of the organisation, was an “attempt to create fear psychosis among judicial officers so as to make inroads into the independence and impartiality of the judiciary.”

‘Assault on freedom’

V. Vinitha, secretary of the organisation, viewed the incident as an assault on the freedom and independence of the district judiciary.

Most members of the Kerala forum, following a call given by the judicial officers’ association in Jharkhand, changed the digital profile pictures in protest against the incident and to flag their concerns. The issue of security of the judicial officers in Kerala would be brought to the notice of the State authorities, said K.T. Nizar Ahamed, the executive committee member of the organisation.

The incident also exposed the vulnerable circumstances under which the district judiciary was discharging its duties, pointed out the resolution passed by the association.

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Printable version | Sep 20, 2021 7:53:58 PM |

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