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SC rejects plea to suspend Justice Karnan’s sentence

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to suspend the six-month imprisonment sentence for Calcutta High Court Judge Justice (Retd.) C.S. Karnan, in a contempt of court case.

A vacation bench of the Apex Court headed by Justice D Y Chandrachud and also comprising Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul refused to give any relief in the matter.

Mathew J Nedumpara, lawyer appearing for Karnan, mentioned the matter before the vacation bench of the top court today.

Nedumpara pleaded to the Apex Court seeking bail and suspension of the six months jail sentence, to which the court observed, “The seven judge bench had passed the order. It binds everybody. It binds us also.”

Karnan was arrested by the Kolkata police in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu on Tuesday and brought to the national capital.

Justice Karnan’s close aide and his counsel confirmed the arrest, adding that he would move the Supreme Court seeking Justice Karnan’s release and cancellation or suspension of the jail sentence.

As per reports, the Calcutta High Court judge, who was absconding since May 9, will be brought to Kolkata on transit remand.

Earlier on June 7, the Supreme Court refused to grant relief to Justice Karnan in the contempt of court case where he was sentenced to six-month imprisonment.

The apex court earlier on May 19 rejected Justice Karnan’s plea for recall of the six-month jail term for contempt of court, stating that the petition was “not maintainable” in the court.

“I am constrained, but to hold that the present writ petition is not maintainable. The relief, if any, lies somewhere else. I, thus, see no reasonable cause to receive the present writ petition for registration under the provisions of order XV, rule (5) of the Supreme Court rules, 2013,” the Supreme Court Registrar said in the order.

Earlier this month, Justice Karnan had approached the apex court seeking recall of the May 9 order, in which he was convicted and was sentenced to six-month imprisonment.

The top court had taken suo motu cognizance of numerous letters written by him against judges of the Madras High Court and the apex court and restrained him from exercising administrative and judicial powers from February 8.

Karnan is the first ever sitting judge of a higher court in judicial history to be sentenced to jail term. (ANI)