Patnaik report on ‘conspiracy against judiciary’ submitted

Former Supreme Court judge, Justice A.K. Patnaik, on Saturday confirmed to The Hindu that he has submitted a detailed 40-page report on his investigation into allegations of a “larger conspiracy” hatched by a powerful lobby of fixers, disgruntled apex court employees and corporate figures to compromise the functioning of the highest judiciary.

“The report is detailed and deals with each and every allegation made on the aspect of the larger conspiracy against the judiciary. The report was submitted in the Supreme Court a month ago. It was not taken for hearing because the court was busy with the Ayodhya issue. It will be taken up for hearing in open court shortly,” Justice Patnaik said.

The retired judge said the contents of the report cannot be over-simplified by saying that so and so has been given clean chit and others not.

“All the allegations have been squarely dealt with and conclusions drawn on them. The report is not about the woman who complained of sexual harassment against the Chief Justice of India. The report is an enquiry into the allegation of larger conspiracy and evidence produced in support of it in the Supreme Court,” Justice Patnaik said.

He said the report was not submitted by him in the Supreme Court in a sealed cover. However, he said whatever had appeared in the media about the contents of his report were “selective leaks” and not sourced from him.

Even the Special Bench of the Supreme Court led by Justice Arun Mishra, which had appointed Justice Patnaik, had clarified that the retired judge’s enquiry would not be on the woman’s sexual harassment complainant.

Justice Patnaik’s enquiry had focussed on material and affidavits provided by advocate Utsav Singh Bains, who claimed that a plot was on to target the judiciary, including Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi.

Justice Patnaik was tasked with probing into Mr. Bains’ claim that he was approached by a person called ‘Ajay’ in early April. He was offered up to ₹1.5 crore to file a false case against the CJI. This man, the lawyer had said, claimed to be a relative of the former apex court staffer who had levelled sexual harassment allegations against the Chief Justice.

The woman had abruptly withdrawn from the in-house inquiry conducted by a three-judge committee led by Justice S.A. Bobde into her sexual harassment complaint against Chief Justice Gogoi. The committee, shortly after, found no substance in her complaint.

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Printable version | Sep 17, 2021 1:11:21 PM |

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