Judge slaps fellow judge

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By OUR CORRESPONDENT in Ahemdabad
  • Published 11.01.07
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Ahmedabad, Jan. 11: When high court judge B.J. Sethana invited him home, Pradeep Majumdar wasn’t expecting this kind of hospitality.

Sethana today slapped Majumdar, his colleague, during an argument.

The day had begun on a pleasing note, when the two met while on a morning walk. Sethana asked Majumdar and his wife to join him at home for a cup of tea. Eager to mend their relations that had soured of late, Majumdar agreed.

But their conversation soon turned into a bitter quarrel, and Sethana landed three slaps on his colleague’s face.

Sources said Majumdar did not retaliate and Sethana fired a volley of the choicest abuses. The assault left Majumdar speechless and his wife in tears.

Sethana, who is due for a promotion, denied the incident, saying it was a “rumour”. Majumdar, too, chose not to go public and refused to be drawn into any controversy.

But acting Chief Justice Y.R. Meena confirmed the “unfortunate incident”.

The judge, however, did not lodge a police complaint after Meena told him not to, as it would bring a bad name to the judiciary.

He instead asked Majumdar to give a written complaint against Sethana, which he would forward to the Chief Justice of India for necessary action.

Today’s incident also prompted Majumdar’s sons, Sarvil and Parthil — both practising advocates in Gujarat High Court — to write to the acting chief justice, requesting him not to put their cases in Sethana’s court.

Sources said relations between the two judges had been strained since September 2006, when Sethana had made an adverse comment against Majumdar’s son while dismissing a case that he was fighting.