The Supreme Court stated that dismissing the judge’s disciplinary actions would be in the best interests of all parties concerned.
The Patna High Court has withdrawn its case against a district judge from Bihar who had been placed on suspension as of February of this year in response to the Supreme Court’s intervention. In the case of [Shishikant Rai v. High Court of Judicature at Patna & An.].
A suspension order imposed and recently extended by the High Court was challenged by Shashi Kant Rai, an Additional Sessions Judge from Araria in Bihar, in a petition to the Supreme Court.
According to the order made public today and signed by the High Court’s Registrar General, after the Supreme Court’s ruling earlier this week, the High Court decided to suspend departmental proceedings against the Special Judge under the POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act).
The judge from Araria, Bihar was facing disciplinary action, but a bench of justices led by UU Lalit and S Ravindra Bhat determined that dropping the charges would be in everyone’s best interests, especially given that it may send the wrong signal to other judges.
“Drop everything, is what we sincerely advise. We can go right into it even if you don’t want to. There must be something obvious, unless you’re charging corruption. He is incredibly unjust to him because he is merely carrying out his orders… It sends the wrong message to other, more capable people “The Bench had made an oral statement.
Justice Bhat had made a remark that, “There shouldn’t be overzealousness to punish.”
The petitioner’s senior attorney, Vikas Singh, stated that the judge was prepared to provide a statement before the High Court disputing the allegations made against him.
The judge argued before the Supreme Court that he was exclusively targeted for criticism of the district judiciary’s newly implemented assessment system for promotions.
The petitioner-judge had written to the High Court requesting that it take into consideration reinstating seniority as a foundation for such promotions following rounds of non-consideration for promotion as a civil judge (senior division).
“The Hon’ble High Court, merely for questioning the process of evaluating judgments, immediately issued show cause notice to the Petitioner and later suspended him without giving any reasons,” it is alleged. As a result, the court violated its constitutional duty to oversee and safeguard judicial officers.
It’s interesting to note that the petitioner had, in November 2021, after only one day of hearings, found a guy guilty of sexual abuse of a minor and sentenced him to life in prison.
Rai said in his petition to the Supreme Court that following the issuance of that ruling, he had received death threats.
The suspension order and ongoing disciplinary procedures against him were also brought up, and it was said that they were made without any justification, which caused him mental anguish because “he stands condemned for an activity that otherwise received the admiration of the State.”
He gave a death sentence after hearing a case for four days, which was one of the reasons he was suspended. The top court had made the following observation in this regard during a prior hearing:
“This judge has pronounced death sentence in 4 days, and we have been attempting to develop techniques to examine mitigating elements on death sentence,” the prosecutor said.
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