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Second judge ready to reveals assets

Two days after a Punjab and Haryana High Court judge voluntarily made his family’s assets public, a Madras High Court judge, Justice K Chandru today came forward to make his wealth details public, reports MR Venkatesh.

india Updated: Aug 24, 2009 23:49 IST
MR Venkatesh

Two days after a Punjab and Haryana High Court judge voluntarily made his family’s assets public, a Madras High Court judge, Justice K Chandru on Monday came forward to make his wealth details public.

Justice Chandru told Hindustan Times that in accordance with an internal resolution adopted by the High Court judges, he had already given details of his personal assets to the chief justice.

“I have even said it can be put on the Madras High Court website,” but it has to be authorisd by the chief justice since it is not a private website, Justice K Chandru said.

Justice Chandru is the third judge to speak out on the issue within four days, in a move seen as a chain reaction triggered by Karnataka high court judge, DV Shylendra Kumar, in a newspaper article last week.

Justice Kumar had written that it was incorrect to assume that majority of judges were opposed to declare their assets and the Chief Justice of India (CJI) was not authorized to speak on behalf of all the judges.

CJI KG Balakrishnan had reacted angrily to Justice Kumar’s outburst, and had called him “publicity crazy” on Sunday.

Favouring a consensus among all the judges on the issue, Justice Chandru said, “this could be meaningfully done only if there is consensus among all the 600 Judges of higher Indian Judiciary.”

Referring to the declaration by Justice K.Kannan of Punjab and Haryana high court, he said not all judges are avid bloggers, "nor do I have a personal blog myself,” Justice Chandru, known for his fearless and progressive judgements, said.

The chief justice could release the information about the assets of individual judges, but “unless it is a statutory return”, even the he could well within the law say that the details could be had from individual Judges who are willing to furnish it, he said.

“Ultimately, this issue will go around in circles unless there is a consensus among all the judges (of the higher judiciary),” Justice Chandru said.