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Tainted judge was once chosen one

One of the 18 district judges in Rajasthan whose removal has been recommended on corruption charges was in the running for a high court in 2008, HT has learnt.

delhi Updated: Mar 23, 2010 00:55 IST
Nagendar Sharma

One of the 18 district judges in Rajasthan whose removal has been recommended on corruption charges was in the running for a high court in 2008, HT has learnt.

District judge Ashok Tyagi’s was on the list of “the tainted judges” drawn during a full court meeting of the Rajasthan High Court on Saturday.

“It is a fact that the name of the controversial judge was recommended from Rajasthan, but was not accepted by the Supreme Court collegium 18 months back,” said a law ministry official on condition of anonymity.

The Bar Council of India, regulator of the legal profession in the country, has demanded that the probe panel report be made public.

“The entire episode is shameful and to prevent further damage to the institution in the state, the probe report, which formed the basis of action against the district judges, should be made public immediately,” said Bir Singh Sinsinwar, the Jaipur-based BCI representative.

He also called for action against the members of the collegium who had recommended Tyagi for promotion.

Tyagi declined comment, but sources close to him indicated that majority of the 18 were expected “to jointly challenge the decision”.

The five-member probe panel, set up by Rajasthan High Court Chief Justice Jagdish Bhalla, scrutinised evidence against 50 judges of the district-level and lower judiciary.

“At least 25 judges have been given a clean chit and this was the reason for differences between colleagues in the full court meeting of the high court held at Jodhpur,” said a high court judge, who didn’t wish to be identified.

The latest case brings to the fore the rising cases of corruption in the judiciary.

On January 21, lawyers and women’s groups had held a demonstration in Jaipur demanding review of the orders passed by high court judge Justice R.C. Gandhi in the last two years. Justice Gandhi retired two days later but the HC agreed to review some of his orders.