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Judge CS Karnan defies SC by refusing to appear, given time till March 10

The seven-judge Supreme Court bench hearing the contempt case against Calcutta HC judge CS Karnan has given him further time till March 10 by deferring the hearing, after he defied the SC’s orders by refusing to appear before the court on Monday.

Following Chief Justice of India JS Khehar filing a contempt of court case against Karnan earlier, the SC was hearing the case today, but Judge CS Karnan was not present during the hearing.

In the court on Monday, the Attorney General presented the latest letter written by CS Karnan to the Supreme Court registrar, in which he said that the courts have “no power to enforce punishment against a sitting Judge of the High Court,” according to reports.

Representing the Madras High Court judges, senior Advocate KK Venugopal asked the SC to provide protection to the judges from the ‘verbal abuse’ by justice Karnan.

On February 8, Chief Justice of India JS Khehar had initiated a suo moto contempt of court proceeding against CS Karnan. “Shri Justice C.S Karnan shall forthwith refrain from handling any judicial or administrative work, as may have been assigned to him, in furtherance of the office held by him. He is also directed to return, all judicial and administrative files in his possession, to the Registrar General of the High Court immediately,” he stated in the order.

In 2015, CS Karnan had threatened contempt of court proceedings against Chief Justice of Madras HC Sanjay K Kaul, who has been now appointed as a judge of the Supreme Court. Karnan had alleged that Kaul was interfering in his judicial work and had also asked for a CBI investigation into educational qualification of another judge, according to TOI.

He had also claimed that he was a victim of caste bias as he was a Dalit and had accused the Madras High Court chief justice of harassing him. When he was transferred, he had asked the Chief Justice of India not to interfere in his “jurisdiction” and later accepting the transfer.

Source: The News Minute