Jaipur, Dec. 24: An impeachment threat looms over a Rajasthan High Court judge indicted for seeking sexual favours from a doctor.
A committee of three chief justices appointed by the Supreme Court has charged Justice Arun Madan with asking Sunita Malviya to have sex with him in exchange for judicial favours in a case pending against her.
The committee’s findings were made public by former Chief Justice of India G.B. Pattanaik on December 14. But a chargesheet was filed only this week against Madan and a high court official who played the go-between.
The Rajasthan High Court Bar Association, which has been up in arms against Madan since Pattanaik’s disclosures, has now stepped up the heat against him. It is demanding that all cases be withdrawn from him and he be sent on leave immediately. It has also decided to boycott Madan when the court reopens after the year-end vacations.
Advocate Maneesh Bhandari, the bar association president, today said an advisory panel had been set up to suggest how impeachment proceedings can be brought against Madan.
According to Sunita’s complaint to the anti-corruption bureau, Govind Kalwani --- the deputy registrar (record) of the high court --- looked her up on October 18 and proposed that her case would be disposed off fast if she agreed to sleep with him and a couple of high court judges. He had left saying he would get back to her in two days.
On October 21, Kalwani called her up on her mobile. Sunita promptly called him over to her place and informed husband Ajay — a government doctor — and Jodhpur additional divisional commissioner Prabha Tak of the development.
Ajay planted a tape recorder in the drawing room and lay in wait for Kalwani in an adjoining room along with his clinic staff. After landing, the court official unsuspectingly repeated his proposal and then contacted Madan on his mobile.
Once the hidden tape recorded his voice, Ajay and his staff sprung on Kalwani who desperately tried to get away. After Tak landed, Kalwani was allowed to leave.
The next day, Tak and Sunita briefed divisional commissioner Khem Raj Chowdhary and handed him the tape. Sunita also sent a copy of the tape and a formal complaint to the chief justice of Rajasthan High Court.
When the matter reached Pattanaik, he set up the three-judge panel to probe Sunita’s complaint.
The committee submitted its findings on December 14.
Though the panel had indicted Madan, outgoing CJI Pattanaik did not announce any action against him. A report said he held back because there were allegations of corruption against Madan, and Pattanaik wanted the same panel to conduct another inquiry.
Bar association president Bhandari said a team of lawyers had met Pattanaik in October and requested that he be sent back to his home state Delhi, as there were several complaints against him.
He also disclosed that when Madan was made a judge in 1990, the Delhi High Court Bar Association had opposed his selection and threatened to go on strike. So, Madan was administered the oath of office in the dark of night and immediately moved to Rajasthan High Court.