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CONSTITUTIONAL QUESTIONS AND CITIZENS' RIGHTSAn Omnibus Comprising Constitutional Questions in India and Citizens' Rights, Judges and State Accountability$
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A. G. Noorani

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195678291

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195678291.001.0001

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The Bar and the Bench 1

The Bar and the Bench 1

Chapter:
(p.47) 7 The Bar and the Bench1
Source:
CONSTITUTIONAL QUESTIONS AND CITIZENS' RIGHTS
Author(s):

A.G. Noorani

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195678291.003.0073

This chapter examines the suspension of five distinguished lawyers by the Supreme Court Bar Association on the grounds of making 'irresponsible' allegations against Justice Madan Mohan Punchhi in a confidential representation to the president, the chief justice of India, and the prime minister. The lawyers were members and office bearers of the Committee on Judicial Accountability. The chapter notes the breakdown of the constitutional mechanism, after the Inquiry Committee found Justice V. Ramaswamy guilty of some of the charges. It suggests that abstention is considered a betrayal of the constitutional mandate and that the Lok Sabha acted in a quasi-judicial capacity in impeachment proceedings. In addition, the discussion considers investigation process after a motion of impeachment, the law of contempt, suspecting a judge, and the silent role of the Bar Associations.

Keywords:   Supreme Court Bar Association, Justice Madan Mohan Punchhi, Committee on Judicial Accountability, abstention, Lok Sabha, impeachment, contempt, Bar Associations, Justice V. Ramaswamy

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