The Karnataka High Court has upheld the order of compulsory retirement of a civil judge, who was caught red-handed while signing order sheets of the previous day during a surprise visit of the Principal District Judge.
The bench headed by Justice P.S. Dinesh Kumar observed that maintaining a high degree of probity and integrity was a hallmark of judges while giving the order on Wednesday.
"To record proceedings in the order sheet, which have not taken place is anathema to sacrosanct court proceedings and such conduct cannot be countenanced in the case of a judicial officer, judge. Litigants approach the courts with utmost trust. If this is permitted, there will be no sanctity for the proceedings," Justice Dinesh Kumar observed.
The bench dismissed the petition filed in this regard by Shivanand Laxman Anchi. The inquiry report alleged that the accused civil judge neither cross-examined the witnesses nor adduced evidence on his behalf.
The Principal District Judge in his report stated that the civil judge did not sign the attendance registrar and was signing the order sheets typed on the computer and recording the previous day's date. The bench clerk who was questioned had revealed that he had got the order typed as per the oral instructions.
Based on the charges of the Principal District Judge, articles of charges were issued against the petitioner, a former civil judge. He was given a compulsory retirement order on March 22, 2021.