Ranchi, Sep 1: The High Court of Jharkhand on Wednesday ordered initiating criminal contempt proceedings against Advocate General (AG) Rajiv Ranjan and Additional Advocate General (AAG) Sachin Kumar over their alleged remarks while seeking recusal of Justice Sanjay Kumar Dwivedi during hearing of the death case of a woman sub-inspector of police. Taking suo motu cognisance of the matter, the high court directed the Registrar General to issue notices to both.
In one of the earlier hearings held in the case, the AG had told the court that after the hearing was over on August 11, the microphone of the petitioner’s advocate remained on and he was telling his client that the decision of the matter was bound to come in his favour and a CBI inquiry is fixed 200 per cent in this case. Sub-inspector of Police Rupa Tirkey had died allegedly by suicide in May at her government accommodation at Sahebganj. When the counsel for the applicant is making such a claim, the bench should not hear the matter, the AG had said.
According to the contempt petition, the AG had behaved without respect for the court while seeking the judge’s recusal and had also refused to file an affidavit despite being asked, saying his oral submission was sufficient. It was also alleged that the AAG misbehaved in the court with counsels for the opposite party.
The court ordered to initiate the contempt proceedings after completing the hearing in the case. Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the AG and AAG, had submitted that it would be in everyone’s interest not to initiate contempt case against them.
“We tender an unconditional apology for this, but when it comes in writing, it will come on the record of the court," Sibal said. To this, the bench said, “Can the Advocate General behave like this in the court? The question has not only been raised on the judge, but on the judicial institution. Affidavit should be filed in this matter." During the last hearing of the Rupa Tirkey case, the AG told Justice S K Dwivedi that he should not hear the matter now.
The court asked the AG to present what he was saying in the court in the form of an affidavit. But the AG refused to file the affidavit and said that his oral statement was sufficient. After this, the bench, recording the statement of the Advocate General, had referred the matter to Chief Justice Ravi Ranjan but he again sent the matter to the bench of Justice SK Dwivedi for hearing.
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