On Friday, a 35-year-old former woman staffer of the Supreme Court came out with allegations of sexual harassment against the Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi.

CJI Ranjan Gogoi denies sexual harassment allegations claims plot to threaten judiciary
news Sexual Harassment Saturday, April 20, 2019 - 12:41

Responding to the sexual harassment allegations against him, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi said that the independence of the judiciary is under serious threat, and if judges have to work under these conditions, good people will never come to this office. But regardless of that, I’ll continue to function, he said. 

A three-judge Bench comprising the Chief Justice of India, Justice Arun Mishra and Justice Sanjeev Khanna had a special siting at 10.30am on Saturday to deal with a matter of 'great public importance touching upon the independence of judiciary'.  Neither the woman, nor her lawyers or representatives were called for this special sitting. But the CJI, The Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and Attorney General KK Venugopal went ahead and made serious charges against the woman who had come forward with the complaint.

On Friday, a 35-year-old woman who used to work as a junior court assistant in the Supreme Court of India, wrote to 22 judges of the court alleging sexual harassment by the CJI. 

In his reply, Ranjan Gogoi began by stating that he received four communications from The Wire, Leaflet, Caravan and Scroll on Friday evening, saying that a letter is being circulated by a dismissed SC employee alleging that the CJI had sought sexual favours. The letter states that her family has been threatened, and that there are criminal cases against them.  

"All I would like to say is this, undoubtedly all employees are treated fairly and decently. This employee was there for a month and half. There were allegations, and I didn't deem it appropriate to reply to the allegations. This lady has a criminal background. There are two FIRs against her. How did she enter Supreme Court service when there were criminal cases pending? I inquired with Delhi Police.Two criminal cases pending against the husband. She was arrested in connection with certain FIRs. State has filed cancellation of bail and is in consideration of Patiala House court today," the CJI said.

Stating that these allegations against him after 20 years of selfless service are unbelievable, the CJI said, "With a bank balance of 6,80,000 that is in my bank account, this is my total asset. When I started as a judge, I have much hope. On the verge of retirement, I have 6 lakhs.”

“I don’t think this can be a plot of a junior assistant. There is a bigger plot. They want to deactivate the office or CJI.”

The CJI added that this issue will be considered by the senior-most judges of the SC and not by him.

Many have come forward criticising this special bench called by the CJI.

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