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बेसिक इंग्लिश का दूसरा सत्र (कक्षा प्रारंभ : 22 अक्तूबर, शाम 3:30 से 5:30)
Q. Justice Karnan case and Judicial dysfunction: Discuss the issues of corruption charges and contempt of court charges of Justice Karnan case.
May 16, 2017 Related to : GS Paper-2

Ans :


Recently the Supreme Court of India has ordered the arrest of Calcutta High Court judge C S Karnan, and sentenced him to six months imprisonment on the charge of contempt of court. The apex court has sought to gag media from carrying and publishing any statement by Justice Karnan, but immediately after justice Karnan also issued a counter-order against the gag. Nothing like this has ever happened in India’s judicial system before.


Sentencing one member of judiciary to jail by other members of judiciary is a clear symptom of dysfunction. Justice Karnan accused the judges in top courts of graft, but judges have not addressed his charges. It does do have negative impact on our judicial system, hence there is an urgent need of reforms in avoid such things in future.


  • In the past, Justice Karnan has accused at least 20 fellow judges in top courts of graft and, more recently, ordered the arrest of six Supreme Court judges. He has never withdrawn his graft charges against the top judiciary. 
  • The judicial members of highest court held him for contempt of court and also questioned his mental instability. But never answered or clarified the charges made by him. 
  • The incident has created mess in judicial system. India lacks an efficient system to investigate and prosecute charges on member of judiciary, particularly of higher judiciary.     
  • Though our constitution has provided the provision of impeachment, but the process of impeachment is very difficult, and it is a politically overlaid option, has not worked well in the past. Hence there is a need of alternative to check the charges on members of Judiciary. 
  • In case of any charge on any judicial members, let a body of judges and lawyers try any judge accused of impropriety in open court, hearing all evidence, with media reporting.
  • Such hearing will enhance the faith on judiciary and brings appropriate checks on any judicial wrongdoing. Justice Karnan case, whatever the truth of his allegations, has probably opened the door in such direction. 


The case of Justice Karnan has damaged the faith on judiciary to certain extent. Both incidents, the charges he made on judges of top court and sentencing him of jail terms both shows the dysfunctional state of our judicial system. Hence it must be addressed as early as possible to restore the faith in our judicial system. 

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