[dropcap]I[/dropcap]N an unprecedented move, Patna High Court Chief Justice Amreshwar Pratap Sahi has withdrawn all the judicial work from the second senior-most judge in the court Justice Rakesh Kumar after the latter ordered CBI inquiry into corruption allegation in the lower judiciary.
“All matters pending before Justice Rakesh Kumar, sitting singly including tired up/part-heard or otherwise stand to withdraw with immediate effect”, the Patna High Court Chief Justice said in a notice issued on Wednesday.
On August 28, Justice Kumar passed an ordered for CBI inquiry in a matter where a former IAS officer KP Ramaiah – who is facing an allegation of embezzlement of Rs 5 crores – was granted bail by a vacation judge of Vigilance Court on the same day of surrendering.
The vacation judge granted the bail to the former IAS officer even after his anticipatory bail was rejected by the High Court in May 2019.
Justice Kumar in his order had noted that: “Of course, grant of bail or refusal of bail is complete discretion of the court, but if the manner, in which, an accused is granted bail, which raises finger against the judiciary, certainly exercising supervisory power, this court is entitled to examine as to whether the power for grant of bail was exercised judiciously or due to some extraneous consideration.”
Justice Kumar also refereed to Republic TV sting video “Cash for Justice” aired in 2017 which was reflective of the fact that in court premises of the Patna Civil Court, demanding and accepting illegal gratification was rampant.
“In the normal course, I would not have passed such order, but since last few years, this Court is taking notice of the fact that in Patna Judgeship, things are not going in its right perspective”, observed Justice Kumar.
Justice Kumar in his order also remarked that “it has been noticed that instead of discharging duty, we (Judges) are more indulged in enjoying privileges”, and said, “corruption in this High court is open secret”.
Justice Kumar also pitched that “it is also open fact that wards of Judges are practising in Patna High Court. Ward of one of Judge, even during short period of his profession, has taken classes in Bihar Judicial Academy and got honorarium”.
“I am of the opinion that only to save the respect of judiciary, we must not put curtain to those corruptions, otherwise faith of entire society will be finished in the judicial system” Justice Kumar noted.
He added: “If after noticing all those facts, only I become an expectator, certainly I can never forgive me”.