On Saturday (2 September), the Rajasthan High Court issued a notice to state Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot over his alleged remark accusing that corruption is rampant in the Judiciary. A two-judge bench of Justices Manindra Mohan Shrivastava and Ashutosh Kumar of the Jaipur bench of the high court issued a notice to CM Gehlot asking him to respond regarding the controversial remark that has been attributed to him.
The bench said, “The contents of the statement if made by the respondent, prima facie make out a case that it tends to scandalise the Courts because it does not refer to any particular case or category of cases, but general in nature against the judiciary as a whole.”
Rajasthan HC issues Notice on a PIL seeking criminal contempt against CM Ashok Gehlot.
Gehlot had recently made remarks against the Judiciary alleging Corruption.
HC Says: “Contents of the statement, if made by the respondent, prima face make out a case that it tends to… pic.twitter.com/K5qY5fe2JZ
— Verdictum (@verdictum_in) September 2, 2023
The bench issued the notice in response to a PIL which was filed by a Supreme Court advocate and former Judicial officer Shiv Charan Gupta. Advocate Gupta claimed that the alleged remark made by CM Gehlot amounted to scandalising and lowering the image of the State Judiciary.
Subsequently, the High Court issued the notice and has given the Chief Minister 3 weeks time to respond. The matter will now be heard on 3 October.
The petitioner, Advocate Gupta submitted before the court that there is no specific provision contained in the Rajasthan High Court Rules, 1952 that could provide for the manner or procedure through which the court could take suo motu cognizance. He added that for this reason, he has filed a petition to bring the court’s notice over this issue.
Earlier, while speaking to the media on 30th August, Rajasthan CM Gehlot reportedly said, “Aaj to bataiye itna corruption ho raha hai judiciary ke andar. Itna bhayankar corruption hai, kai vakil log toh maine suna hai likh ke le jaate hain judgment aur judgment wohi aata hai.”
Translation of his purported remarks – It is frightful that now-a-days corruption is rampant in the judiciary. Corruption is happening at such a large scale that I have heard that many lawyers write the judgment and take it along, and that is the judgment given.
Allegedly, he added, “Kya ho raha hai judiciary ke andar? Chahe lower ho, chahe upper ho, haalat bade gambhir hai.”
Translation – What is happening in the judiciary? Whether lower court or higher court, the situation is very serious.
Even back then, his alleged remarks criticising the judiciary drew flakes from the Rajasthan High Court Bar Association and now it has landed him in legal trouble.