Calcutta High Court judge C.S. Karnan has "refused” to accept the bailable warrant issued against him by the Supreme Court in a suo motu contempt of court order. On Friday, a team of police officials led by the State’s Director General of Police (DGP) Surajit Kar Purkayastha went to Justice Karnan’s residence in the New Town area on the Eastern fringes of the city to hand over the warrant.
Karnan is facing the top court’s ire for accusing several Madras high court judges of corruption.
This comes a week after the apex court directed the state police chief to "personally" serve the warrant to the sitting Calcutta High Court judge after Justice Karnan failed to appear before the court several times.
"I rejected the same (the bailable warrant) after assigning valid reasons. This kind of demeaning acts from your lordships and further perpetrating the Atrocities Act is absolutely out of law to the utter embarrassment of a Dalit judge,” justice Karan wrote in his response.
"Hence, I request you to stop your further harassment in order to uphold the dignity and decorum of our courts.”
He wrote this to the seven judges of the Supreme Court bench and called it his "order” on the warrant.
"Refusing" the warrant, Justice Karnan, 61, said, "The whole world is laughing at our Supreme Court for the way it is behaving with me." When asked if he would abide by the court order, the judge said, "Wait and see". He also threatened to file defamation cases against seven Supreme Court judges who had issued a contempt notice against him, demanding a compensation of Rs. 14 crore for "disturbing his mind and social life".
The police, however, said that Justice Karnan signed a "personal recognition" bond and made some observations, adding that the warrant was now considered served.
Earlier, he had accused the Supreme Court of being "anti-Dalit” for issuing the contempt notice against him. He had also claimed that the court’s order was "unethical” and a violation of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of) Atrocities Act.
Chief Justice of India JS Khehar and six more judges had summoned Justice Karnan to court for contempt in February after his controversial allegations about corruption in the judiciary. Justice Karnan even wrote letters to Prime Minister Narendra Modi alleging corruption among former and current judges in the country.
After he went public with his allegations, the top court stripped him of his judicial and administrative work and also transferred him from the Madras High Court to the Calcutta High Court.
This was the not first time Karnan took on colleagues in front of the media.
In 2011, he called a press conference to accuse a fellow high court judge of caste discrimination on the ground that the judge who sat next to him "deliberately” touched him with his foot.
In 2015, he interrupted arguments going on in another courtroom in the Madras HC regarding judicial appointments, demanding to be heard.
In April 2015, he began suo motu contempt proceedings against the chief justice of the Madras high court, Sanjay Kishan Kaul, accusing the latter of harassing and belittling him because he was a Dalit and by giving him "insignificant and dummy” portfolios. The Supreme Court stayed the same.