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Upholds compulsory retirement of Civil Judge for preparing order sheets of proceedings that did not even take place : Karnataka High Court

 

This particular decision is held by the High Court Of Karnataka through the single bench of Justice P S Dinesh Kumar in the case of SHIVANAND LAXMAN ANCHI v. THE STATE OF KARNATAKA

Facts

The petitioner was appointed as a Civil Judge, Junior Division in April 2014. In 2019, he was posted as Additional Civil Judge, JMFC, Virajpet and by a Notification dated June 22, 2019, he was placed in charge as Civil Judge and JMFC, Ponnampet with a direction to itinerate the said court for three days in a week, on every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

On June 27, 2019, the Principal District and Sessions Judge, Kodagu, Madikeri conducted a surprise visit and noticed that the petitioner was signing the order sheets of the previous day on 27th June and putting the date as 26th June.Based on the report of the Principal District Judge, Articles of Charges were issued. A Departmental Enquiry was conducted by the First Additional District Judge, Kodagu, Madikeri and he held the charge as proved. A second show cause notice was issued and the petitioner submitted his reply. Petitioner was compulsorily retired vide order dated March 22, 2021

Orders and judgements 

“It is relevant to note that Court proceedings are sacrosanct acts. By instructing the Bench Clerk to prepare the order sheets of the previous day and by signing them on the following day, petitioner has committed a serious dereliction of his duty.” ” To record proceedings in the order sheet, which have not actually taken place is anathema to sacrosanct Court proceedings and such conduct cannot be countenanced in the case of a Judicial Officer/Judge. If this is permitted, there will be no sanctity for the proceedings. It is therefore, imperative that strict action is taken. “Maintenance of high degree of probity and integrity, are the hallmarks of Judges. Litigants approach the Court with utmost trust. To record proceedings in the order sheet, which have not actually taken place is anathema to sacrosanct Court proceedings and such conduct cannot be countenanced in the case of a Judicial Officer/Judge. If this is permitted, there will be no sanctity for the proceedings. It is therefore imperative that strict action is taken.”

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Judgement reviewed by- Mohammed Shoaib

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