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Judge Loya case: 'Key Witness' Seeks Apology for Allegations Against HC Judges

File photo of Judge BH Loya. (Image: CNN-New18/TV Grab)

File photo of Judge BH Loya. (Image: CNN-New18/TV Grab)

Around a year ago, the HC had sentenced activist-lawyer Satish Uke to two months in jail for committing a criminal contempt of court by making wild and scandalous allegations against judges and others.

New Delhi: Termed as a "key witness" in the Judge Loya case by Congress leader Kapil Sibal, activist-lawyer Satish Uke on Wednesday opted to tender "unconditional apology" for making allegations against judges of the Bombay High Court.

Sibal, who also appeared for Uke in the Supreme Court, sought leave of the bench to appear before the HC and withdraw all accusations.

"The contempt is of the High Court. If they accept your apology, we won't come in your way," a bench headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi replied. It gave Uke time to submit an apology and revert.

Around a year ago, the HC had sentenced Uke to two months in jail for committing a criminal contempt of court by making wild and scandalous allegations against judges and others. It had also restrained Uke from initiating any legal proceedings against the lawyers, judges and court officials.

Uke had moved the top court in appeal, which was dismissed in August last year.

When Uke filed a review petition against the dismissal of his appeal, a bench led by Justice Ranjan Gogoi agreed to examine it, but with a condition that the court may enhance his jail term in case of rejection of his plea.

The twist in the tale came last week when Uke was found sitting alongside Sibal, Salman Khurshid and Randeep Surjewala at a press conference called by the Congress on Judge Loya's death case.

Uke was cited as a key witness by Sibal, who claimed the former helped BH Loya deal with the pressure and was himself attacked. Sibal maintained Uke met him in July 2017 and tried to persuade him about the mystery behind Loya's death. The Congress had then demanded an impartial investigation into the matter.

In the press conference, Uke claimed that three individuals, including him and another judicial officer who was also found dead under mysterious circumstances, had met advocate Prashant Bhushan in 2014, three weeks before BH Loya died. He said they sought help from Bhushan for their safety, and that they were aware of the threats to Loya, who was trying the politically sensitive Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case.

But Bhushan, later talking to a newspaper, had said he did not have any recollection of meeting Uke.

The Supreme Court, in a separate case, is dealing with a bunch of petitions seeking inquiry into the death of Loya. The hearing in this case is on February 9.