Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi has allowed the CBI to take action 'in accordance with the law' against Justice Vijaya K. Tahilramani because of an alleged adverse intelligence report about her regarding property transactions.
Justice Tahilramani recently resigned as Madras High Court chief justice after she was told to head the much smaller Meghalaya High Court.
According to official sources, the Intelligence Bureau recently submitted a five-page report after Justice Tahilramani resigned following the collegium's recommendation to transfer her on August 28 to Meghalaya High Court.
Justice Tahilramani was appointed the Madras High Court chief justice on August 8, 2018, transferred from Bombay High Court where she was the acting chief justice between 2015 and 2017 in three stints. While at Bombay High Court, Justice Tahilramani had on May 7, 2017, upheld the conviction and life imprisonment of 11 people in the post-Gujarat riots Bilkis Bano gang-rape case, while setting aside the acquittal of seven persons, including policemen and doctors.
Confirming the go-ahead to the CBI, sources referred to a report of alleged irregularities in property transactions and some of her alleged decisions on the administrative side as the chief justice of Madras High Court.
The collegium, headed by the CJI, had recommended the transfer.
The collegium, that also has Justices S.A. Bobde, N.V. Ramana, Arun Mishra and R.F. Nariman, recommended her transfer on August 28, after which she had made a representation requesting it to reconsider the proposal.
She had protested against the collegium's decision to not consider her request against transferring her to Meghalaya.
Lawyers in Chennai and in some places in her home state of Maharashtra had protested against the collegium's decision.
Later, the Supreme Court on September 12 said each of the recommendations for transfer of Chief Justices and judges of various high courts was based on 'cogent reasons'.
Without naming Justice Tahilramani, a statement issued by the office of apex court's secretary-general Sanjeev S. Kalgaonkar said the reasons behind transferring judges were not disclosed in the interest of the institution but the apex court collegium would not hesitate to disclose these in some circumstances if it became necessary.
The judge resigned on September 6, days after the Supreme Court collegium declined to reconsider her transfer.
She sent her resignation to President Ram Nath Kovind, a copy of which was sent to CJI Gogoi.
President Kovind accepted Justice Tahilramani's resignation, a government notification said on September 21.
Her resignation has been accepted with effect from September 6, it said.