Activists seek independent probe into allegations against CJI

New Delhi: Prominent activists, including Prashant Bhushan and Aruna Roy, have sought an independent inquiry into allegations of sexual harassment against Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, saying public confidence in the judiciary will be “severely eroded” if the apex court is unable to “credibly” deal with the challenge.
Last week, a junior court assistant had sent written complaints to 22 judges, alleging she was sexually harassed by Chief Justice Gogoi in October 2018.
The case was heard by a new bench of Justices Arun Mishra, Rohinton Fali Nariman and Deepak Gupta.
It was initiated suo moto after a special bench, including Gogoi himself, conducted proceedings on April 20 in the chief justice’s court.
A group of activists and writers have come out with a statement seeking an independent inquiry into allegations of “sexual harassment and victimisation” against Gogoi.
“This is a moment of grave crisis for the judiciary. If the court is unable to credibly deal with this challenge, public confidence in the judiciary will be severely eroded,” the statement said.
“We are extremely concerned to note the complaint of sexual harassment and victimisation made by a woman employee of the Supreme Court against the Chief Justice of India.
The charges are prima facie serious enough to warrant an independent inquiry by a high-level independent committee,” the joint statement said.
Other than Bhushan and Roy, social activist Medha Patkar, writer Arundhati Roy, journalist P Sainath, national president of Swaraj India Yogendra Yadav and CPI leader Annie Raja were among 33 eminent activists and writers to issue the statement. (PTI)

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