SC closes suo motu proceedings to probe conspiracy to frame ex-CJI Ranjan Gogoi

Apex court says possibility of retrieving electronic record is very less now

SC closes suo motu proceedings to probe conspiracy to frame ex-CJI Ranjan Gogoi

Photo for representation purposes. Tribune file

Satya Prakash

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 18

The Supreme Court on Thursday closed the suo motu case initiated to probe into the alleged larger conspiracy to level allegations of sexual harassment against former CJI Ranjan Gogoi in 2019.

The Justice AK Patnaik committee report said a conspiracy to level sexual harassment charges against Justice Gogoi in April 2019 could not be ruled out, the top court said.

The report said it could have been because of the tough stand taken by the then CJI on the judicial and administrative sides.

However, a Bench headed by Justice SK Kaul said there is no need to keep the matter pending as the recovery of electronic evidence was unlikely.

The Bench said the Justice Patnaik committee report had said a conspiracy to level sexual harassment charges against Justice Gogoi in April 2019 could not be ruled out. The report said it could have been because of the tough stand taken by then CJI on the judicial and administrative sides.

Justice Kaul said there was reason to believe that some judgments had led to a conspiracy being hatched against the then CJI.

Justice Patnaik had inquired if decisions taken by then CJI on judicial side had triggered off the conspiracy against him.

“Two years have passed and the possibility of recovery of electronic evidence now is unlikely. A three-member committee headed by CJI SA Bobde has already submitted a report. Suo motu case is closed and proceedings are disposed of. There is no requirement to keep the case going on," Justice Kaul noted.

Referring to a letter written by Director of Intelligence Bureau that some conspiracy might have ensued due to the tough decisions, such as preparation of NRC in Assam, the Bench said, “There are strong reasons to believe that some kind of conspiracy may have been undertaken against the then CJI.”

Advocate Utsav Bains, who had alleged that there was a conspiracy behind the allegations of sexual harassment, said, “It’s a vindication of my stand that there was a conspiracy against CJI Gogoi. I welcome the Supreme Court observation vindicating my stand that there was a conspiracy against CJI Gogoi.”

The Supreme Court’s in-house inquiry – which probed the allegations of sexual harassment levelled by a dismissed woman employee against the then CJI – had in May 2019 given a clean chit to him, saying there was no substance in the allegations.

Tribune Shorts


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