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CJI sexual harassment case: BCI disappointed over views of 2 ex-SC judges


New Delhi: The Bar Council of India (BCI) on Saturday expressed its trust in the in-house inquiry that cleared Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi of sexual harassment allegations.

The council also expressed disappointment over the views of two former Supreme Court judges, Justice Jasti Chelameswar and Justice Madan Lokur, following the clean chit given to Chief Justice of India, Gogoi.

“Both Lokur and Chelameswar were the Chief Justices of Gauhati High Court while Justice Ranjan Gogoi was a Judge. Unfortunately, neither of them could become the Chief Justice of India and Justice Gogoi got this opportunity: This depends on one’s destiny and merit,” Mishra added.

Mishra later went on to add, “We are shocked and surprised to see the comments of the two Judges after several weeks of the closing of this episode. What is their purpose, we fail to understand?”

Mishra said that the council hopes that the two Judges “would not make any further statement in the press which could further harm the institution.”

He added, “Bar has no hesitation in saying that it were these two Judges who had taken lead role in January, 2018 in holdings a Press-Conference and that was the starting point of Deterioration: we should not forget that Justice Gogoi told the very next day that ‘there was no crisis in the Judiciary’, but neither Justice Lokur nor Justice Chelameswar ever realized their mistakes.”

The BCI statement further recommends that the In-House inquiry’s report must not be made public.

“In the considered opinion of the Bar and the responsible citizen of this country, if the report of the Committee is made public, it would cause serious harm to the lady-complainant: Moreover the disgruntled elements and people with vested interests will again start making baseless comments: there will be no end to this episode and this would lead to perpetual irreparable loss to our Highest office of Judiciary,” the statement read.

This comes after it was revealed on May 16 that the former woman court staffer, who levelled allegations of sexual harassment against CJI Ranjan Gogoi, will soon file an appeal against the clean chit given to the CJI by an in-house panel of the apex court.

“The victim will soon file an appeal against the clean chit given to CJI in the sexual harassment case by the in-house panel of the Supreme Court,” lawyer Prashant Bhushan said.

On May 6, it was disclosed that a three-judge in-house committee of the Supreme Court gave a clean chit to CJI Gogoi in the sexual harassment allegations levelled against him by the former court staffer.