The Supreme Court appointed a retired judge to probe the conspiracy against Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi on Thursday. Justice AK Patnaik will probe the charges levelled by lawyer Utsav Bains, who has claimed that the sexual assault allegations against CJI Gogoi is a conspiracy to discredit him. In previous hearing, he had said that he was offered Rs 1.5 crore to represent the former SC staffer who had said that CJI had allegedly assaulted her. The Court orders that Utsav Bains cannot claim privilege under Section 126 of the Evidence Act. He is bound to disclose all the documents. The CBI Director and IB Chief have been ordered to assist Justice AK Patnaik (retired) in this investigation. The order was pronounced by a Bench of Justices Arun Mishra, Rohinton Nariman, and Deepak Gupta.
Prior to the order, in one of the most dramatic moments during the ongoing hearing related to alleged conspiracy against Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, the Supreme Court today said that, “do rich and powerful think they can remote control this court?” The Special Bench hearing the conspiracy charges levelled by lawyer Utsav Bains today said that, “there is a systematic attack, systematic game to malign this institution.” Justice Arun Mishra, who is heading the bench, expressed his anguish and said that the some powerful people of this country were “playing with fire.”
“The way this institution is being treated for the last 3 to 4 years is as if this institution is going to die. People of this country should know the truth. Do the powerful of this country think they can run this country”, asked Justice Mishra. “Every day we hear of Bench fixing. Can the Registry be allowed to be managed by muscle and money power? This institution belongs to you (Bar). This institution has been built by Nani Palkhivala, Attorney General, Fali Nariman etc. We (judges) come and go”, Justice Mishra added. The top court then reserved its order, which will be pronounced at 2 pm today.
Earlier, when the hearing began, advocate Utsav Bains had handed over more material to the Bench in another sealed cover.
In para 17 of the affidavit, Bains said that, “That on 19thApril, 2019, a very reliable person, strictly on the condition of anonymity and in good faith, informed the Deponent about a corporate figure who tried to approach a Hon’ble Supreme Court judge to get a favourable order in a high-profile case listed before this Hon’ble Court but was unsuccessful and then the said corporate figure attempted to get the case transferred from the court of that Hon’ble Supreme Court judge but did not succeed and thus ganged up with an alleged fixer by the name of Romesh Sharma and his aides to frame the Hon’ble Chief Justice of India in a false case of sexual harassment to pressurize him to resign.”
In para 20, the lawyer said that, “That it is pertinent to mention here that the Deponent is privy to certain events involving the said corporate figure and will submit in a sealed cover the events and list of the involved persons to this Hon’ble Court should it so direct him.”
What is more startling are the allegations in para 28 of the affidavit. Bains had claimed that India’s ‘Most Wanted’ underworld don Dawood Ibrahim is behind the ‘conspiracy of false sexual assault case.’