New Delhi, July 22 : Press Council of India chairman Justice Markandey Katju, who alleged corruption in judiciary, Tuesday posed six questions to former chief justice of India Justice R.C. Lahoti. Justice Katju posed the questions to Justice Lahoti in his blog justicekatju.blogspot.in. “Is it, or is it not, correct that I first wrote him a letter from Chennai, stating that there were serious allegations of corruption about an additional judge of Madras High Court, and therefore he (Justice Lahoti) should get a secret intelligence enquiry held against that additional judge, and thereafter I personally met Justice Lahoti at Delhi and again requested for a secret IB enquiry against the additional judge about whom I had received several complaints, and from several sources, that he was indulging in corruption?”
He also asked: “Is it, or is it not, correct that on my request Justice Lahoti ordered a secret IB enquiry against that judge?” Justice Katju’s allegations of corruption in judiciary snowballed into a major controversy Monday with political parties demanding a probe into the matter as well as questioning the timing of the disclosure.
In his blog post, Justice Katju said: “Some people have commented about the timing of my statement. What happened was that some Tamilians had commented on Facebook that I am posting several matters on my Facebook post, so I should also post some of my experiences in Madras High Court. Then I started posting about my experiences there, and it was at time I remembered this experience too, and posted it.”
Justice went on to ask Justice Lahoti: “Is it, or is it not correct, that a few weeks after I personally met him in Delhi and then returned to Chennai, he telephoned me from Delhi (while I was at Chennai) and told me that the IB, after thorough enquiry, gave a report that indeed the Judge was indulging in corruption?”
Another question he posed was “Is it, or is it not, correct that after receiving the adverse IB report against the additional judge, Justice Lahoti, who was then Chief Justice of India, called a meeting of the three judge Supreme Court Collegium, consisting of himself, Justice Sabarwal, and Justice Ruma Pal, and the three Judge Collegium, having perused the IB report recommended to the government of India not to extend the 2 year term of that additional judge?”
The fifth question posed by Justice Lahoti was “Is it, or is it not, correct that after that recommendation of the three Judge Collegium of the Supreme Court was sent to the government of India, he (Justice Lahoti), on his own, without consulting his two other Supreme Court Collegium colleagues, wrote a letter to the government of India asking the government to give another 1 year term as Additional Judge to the concerned judge?”
And the last question is: “If indeed the IB reported, after an enquiry, that the judge was indulging in corruption, why did he (Justice Lahoti) recommend to the government of India to give that corrupt judge another term of one year as additional judge in the high court?