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Rs 25 lakh fine after plea on top judge

New Delhi: The Supreme Court has imposed a fine of Rs 25 lakh on an NGO that had sought the registration of a first information report against the Chief Justice of India after a former Orissa High Court judge was arrested in an alleged bribery case.

The size of the fine on the Campaign for Judicial Accountability and Reforms (CJAR), associated with lawyer Prashant Bhushan, is not unprecedented but it is uncommon. Usually such fines do not exceed Rs 5 lakh.

A bench of Justices R.K. Aggrawal, Arun Misra and A.M. Khanwilkar fined the NGO on the ground that the allegations were contemptuous, scurrilous, baseless and reckless.

The apex court said the fine should be paid to the fund of the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA).

Besides seeking the FIR against the Chief Justice, the organisation had also wanted the probe to be transferred from the CBI to an independent agency.

The CBI had earlier arrested the former high court judge on the charge of collusion to collect about Rs 2 crore as bribe on the promise that the outcome of a medical college case pending in the Supreme Court could be influenced.

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