When Judges Crave For Justice?

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Hyderabad : It’s a no filmy story but nothing less than that. It only exposes the sorry state of affairs prevailed in the temple of justice – the High Court. Maahyderabad.in brings you an exclusive investigative report on the pathetic tale of a judicial officer who has been paying price for what can be called as ‘uprightness’. He supposed to deliver justice to the people. But he himself is running pillar to post to get the justice done in his 3-year-long case that involves none other than his superior judge at the helm of affairs in the High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad for both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.

He not only faced caste discrimination but also subjected to harassment, humiliation and above all physical abuse by an upper caste superior judge who is also a member of the Collegiums. All this is for not heeding to his dictums. Even his plea for justice with the Supreme Court of India went unheeded. His scream for justice turned out to be screamings in wilderness.

It all began when the junior civil judge S.Ramakrishna of Rayachoti Munsif Magistrate court in Cuddapah district of Andhra Pradesh recorded a dying declaration of a victim of notorious red sanders smuggling case who just before his death went on record on November 20, 2012 that he was set on fire by one Mr.C.V.Pavankumar Reddy by dousing kerosene for refusing to sign on a blank paper as he was pestering for owning up stealing of a Tavera car that was seized for illegally transporting red sanders wood.

Trouble began brewing for Junior Civil Judge with the name of Pavan reflecting in the dying declaration. Pavan Kumar Reddy is a name to reckon with in Rayachoti area. So powerful that he can manipulate or manage anything anybody at any level. Be it in government, politics or judiciary. The officers and staff of Rayachoti Munsif Magistrate including Judicial Officers dance to his tunes fearing backlash. He is law unto himself. It is evident from the fact that his appointment as Additional Pubic Prosecutor in Rayachoti Munsif Magistrate court continued unhindered and unopposed since 12 years against the rule of law for the simple reason that he is the brother of none other than a senior Judge and a member of the collegiums who is placed on highest pedestal in the High Court. Such is the Power of ‘Powerful Pavan’.

Unmindful of his powers, the junior judge went ahead and ordered to register the case against ‘Powerful Pavan’. This was the root cause of his troubles that compelled ‘Big Brother’ to take entry. He called up Ramakrishna on November 30, 2012 and ordered to delete the name of his brother from dying declaration to which he refused. Three months later, he found the court staff altered the court records, missing depositions of the witnesses, forged the signatures of judicial officers on court documents, made the case property and files disappear to help the criminals go scot free. He lodged a complaint with Rayachoti Urban Police on February 7, 2013 vide FIR No. 57 of 2013. 

This prompted the ‘Big Brother’ to summon Ramakrishna to his residence in Rayachoti on February 13 four days after FIR was lodged. The two brothers threatened Ramakrishna with life if he failed to toe their line. They not only abused him by his caste using filthy language but beaten him black and blue. They have thrown him to the ground and kicked him with shoes. The ‘Big Brother’ then directed the Station House Officer of Rayachoti not to arrest the accused in the Crime No.57 and ordered the 5th additional session judge to grant anticipatory bail to all the accused in the Crime No.57.

Humiliated at the incident, the poor JCJ Ramakrishna complained to the High Court Vigilance Registrar at Hyderabad on the next day. But to his utter surprise, he was transferred to Chintapalli munsif court in Visakhapatnam district on February 21st within 5 days of his complaint. Soon after 17 days of his assuming charge at Chintapalli munsif magistrate court, Ramakrishna received suspension orders on March 16, 2013. To his utter surprise, he found that there were six inter-departmental cases were filed against him on ‘flimsy grounds’ such as misuse of mobile phone, abusing office staff, purchasing gold coin worth Rs.349 from Kalyan Jewellers etc.

And since then, he is regularly making rounds to High Court with the hope that his complaint (WP No.16111/2013) would be listed for hearing one day. But the big brother’s clout was such that the matter could not be posted till date. Peeved at this, Ramakrishna approached the Supreme Court of India on September 17, 2013. Here too he drew flank. His case failed to reach the bench. It was returned to him after cancellation of diary endorsement. In a letter dated October 3, 2013 addressed to Ramakrishna, the Assistant Registrar of Supreme Court said that ‘according to the article 235 of the Constitution of India under which the control over Subordinate Courts and persons belonging to the judicial service of the state is with the High Courts’. Hence, the ball came back to ‘big brother’s court wherein he can tilt the scales to his best advantage. It was evident from the fact that his writ petition No.16111/2013 did not see the light of the day till date.

However, after a series of complaints lodged by Ramakrishna seeking thorough enquiry into the allegations against ‘Big Brother’, finally raised an hope when the two-member division bench led by Chief Justice of High Court took up the case for hearing. Pathetically, this too ended up by mere numbering the writ petition (as WP No.33041/2014) besides deleting the name of Big Brother (respondent 2) from the complaint. And to top it all he was not served with the order copy yet. It may not be out of place to mention here that the CJ told the petitioner during the course of hearing that “why don’t you withdraw the writ petition, I will drop the enquiries and reinstate you. Otherwise, the eleven guns are aimed against you to ruin your life and career at this tender age”.

These remarks are not only reflecting the poor state of affairs in our judicial system but will have long lasting impact on the common man in the country as well. It also sends a message rather discreetly that not to dare even in dream to complain against any judge in this country. Still if you do so, it is at your funeral. Finally, the saga of Ramakrishna continued unabated while the ‘Big Brother’ unleashes power as usual. His struggle for justice is turned out to be screaming in wilderness.