Friday, September 22, 2023

Allahabad High Court dismisses plea seeking action against Civil Judge, judicial officer for want of merit

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The Allahabad High Court has dismissed with Rs 50,000 cost a petition that sought action against a current Civil Judge and a Judicial officer, after observing that the allegations levelled by the petitioner were vague, irrelevant and not supported by facts.

The Division Bench of Justice Vivek Kumar Birla and Justice Rahul Chaturvedi dismissed the petition filed by one Ravi Kumar with Rs 50,000 cost and noted that making irresponsible insinuations upon the judiciary or its officers had become a fashion.

The Court was shocked and stunned to see the array of the respondent parties, whereby, Mahima Jain, a serving judicial officer, presently posted as Civil Judge (J.D)/F.T.C-2, Gautam Budh Nagar is arrayed as respondent no 2 and Kusumlata Daksh, Bench Secretary (Peshkar) attached to the Court of Civil Judge (J.D)/ F.T.C-2, Gautam Budh Nagar as respondent no 3.

It said, “The Court records its strongest exception to such type of loose and irresponsible drafting of the petition; whereby every man on road (the petitioner) assumes a right to use any number of caustic innuendos and pungent remarks upon the judicial officer’s integrity.

“Ravi Kumar, the petitioner himself has drafted the petition in Hindi and sought following prayers:

(i) The petitioner seeking “Writ of Certiorari” was sought from us to initiate prosecution against respondent nos 2 and 3.

(ii) Writ of certiorari is sought to initiate the departmental inquiry against respondents no 2 and 3.

Writ of Certiorari could be issued in cases, “Whenever any body of persons having legal authority to determine questions affecting rights of subjects and having the duty to act judicially but have acted in excess of their legal authority.”

Ravi Kumar, the petitioner is a chargesheeted accused, arising out of case under Sections 498A, 323, 506, 342, 354 I.P.C & Sections 3 and 4 of the Dowry Prohibition Act, PS Mahila Thana, District Gautam Budh Nagar, pending in the Court of Civil Judge (S.D.)/F.T.C, Gautam Budh Nagar.

The petitioner, through his Counsel, has filed an Application u/s 482 Cr.P.C assailing the legality and validity of the charge sheet as well as the summoning order dated 12.3.2018.

A Bench of the Court on 20.4.2018 referred the matter before the Allahabad High Court Mediation & Conciliation Centre to enable the parties to settle down their differences and discord with the aid and help of Mediator.

While passing the order, the Bench without entering into the merit of the case, keeping in view the nature of accusation made, thought it proper to refer the matter for mediation, directing the Mediation Centre to conclude the mediation process within two months and furnish its report.

The Court had also stayed the proceedings of the Case for the period of two months or till the next date of listing.

The matter was referred to the mediation process way back on 20.4.2018 and as per information rendered by petitioner Ravi Kumar, the mediation failed in 2018 itself but there is no report available to this effect on the record.

The Bench ruled, “This is the most disgusting feature of the case. It is now a normal practice that such types of lapses often occur, where the reports, pleadings are never placed on record within a reasonable time.

“The Registrar General, Allahabad High Court is hereby directed to hold an inquiry to its logical end and fix the responsibility of erring employees and thereafter suitable departmental proceedings shall be initiated against them for not sending the report from Mediation Centre to the second concerned, so that the report may be placed on original records of the case at first opportunity.

Thus, it is contended by the A.G.A that the interim order dated 20.4.2018 was effective only up to six months. The petitioner never bothered to get the interim order extended during this period and he wants to enjoy the interim order for an unlimited period on certain unfounded presumptions and taking legal advice.

The Court said, “We are now-a-days living in a democracy in its ugliest form; where nobody has got any regard for any institution. This is an unholy and dangerous sign that all and sundry are making unfounded and unsubstantiated allegations against the judiciary in an irresponsible manner.

“Making irresponsible insinuations upon the judiciary or its officers has now become a fashion. This unholy practice has to be whole-heartedly discouraged and deplored by every responsible person of the society. Judiciary is one of the strongest pillars of any healthy democracy. This fact received more significance when recently we have celebrated our 75th Independence Day.

“In order to strengthen the foremost pillars of democracy, there should be mutual regard. The subjects of that democracy too are expected to not become liberal and irresponsible in their expression. The Superior Courts are bound to protect their subordinate courts.

“The Court records its strongest anguish and concern that people at large are now making unwarranted and unsubstantiated canards against the judicial officers relying upon their whims and capricious and making irresponsible allegations of dishonesty. The higher courts are duty bound to save the dignity and honour of the system in general and the individual judicial officer as well that no person is permitted to make sweeping and wild allegations regarding the integrity and character of any judicial officer,” it added.

The Court further said that the apprehension of the petitioner solely springs from the uncalled for preponing the date as has been described hereinbefore, which according to the petitioner, is tantamount to a conspiracy of the judge and his predilection towards prosecution side.

“The unsubstantiated paranoia of an ultra-conscious litigant and his illegitimate apprehensions cannot make us believe in them and also cannot constitute a legitimate ground to allow the prayer sought in the petition. The Judges are also a part of the society just as everybody else is and they do not live in ivory towers.

“The upsurge of a particular type of social crimes causes concern of the judges, who in an important way have also to deal with such crimes in their judicial capacity, therefore, if at some stage some judge ventilates his exasperation at commission of certain crimes, which may sometimes appear to be revolting against the collective consents of humanity, of which the judge himself is an integral part.

“Such expressions must not be mistaken to be any abdication of judicious independent thinking. Nor should it be interpreted as an indication that such presiding officer shall not adhere to the shorn duties as a Judge.

“If there is some such order passed by the trial court with which the petitioner feels aggrieved, the right course is to challenge the same in judicial capacity in the higher courts. The propriety or correctness of any step or order taken or adopted by any judicial officer is amenable to jurisdiction of the superior court.

“So far as the allegation that the presiding officer is hand-in-gloves with the opposite party is concerned, our judicial institutions are robust enough not to be swayed by any such parochial considerations. It is very easy to make insinuations against the presiding officer like this. We do not find any substantial record on the basis of which it may hold that either presiding officer has been approached or the petitioner has been nurtured holds water.

“The allegation as has been fastened by the petitioner against the presiding officer is too vague and conjectural and perhaps even irrelevant and simply cannot persuade us,” it added.

The Court observed that submission, as has been raised by the petitioner in order to seek direction to institute an inquiry against the concerned judicial officer, was very vague and bald.

It said there was absolutely no material to substantiate the same. It was very difficult to accept such kind of unsubstantiated insinuations to become a legitimate ground to initiate any inquiry. The apprehensions as have been made by the petitioner seem to be wholly unfounded and such kind of ultra sensitiveness cannot constitute any legitimate ground to allow the prayer sought in the petition, added the Court.

The Bench concluded that this was not a fit case where this court should exercise its extraordinary jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution.

“As we have noted, the petition levels unsubstantiated allegations against the presiding officer based on unfounded apprehensions. The petitioner has wasted precious time of the Court by filing a frivolous litigation and under these circumstances, the Court dismisses the petition with cost of Rs 50,000 to be paid to the State Exchequer.

“The petitioner shall deposit the cost of Rs 50,000 with the Registrar General of this Court within a period of five months from today. On deposit of such cost, it shall be transmitted to the account of Allahabad High Court Mediation & Conciliation Centre.

“If the petitioner fails to deposit the cost of Rs 50,000, the Registrar General of this Court shall inform the District Magistrate/ Collector, Gautam Budh Nagar for recovery of the said amount as arrears of land revenue, who shall after recovering the same amount from the petitioner, transmit it to the Registrar General of the Court for depositing in the account of Allahabad High Court Mediation & Conciliation Centre within a further period of three months,” the Court ordered.

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