Space For Rent

Space For Rent
Tuesday, September 15, 2015, Bhadra 31, 1422 BS, Zilqad 30, 1436 Hijr

Justice Shamsuddin demeans judiciary
Published :Tuesday, 15 September, 2015,  Time : 11:25 AM  View Count : 54
Justice AHM Shamsuddin Chowdhury of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court has made an unprecedented move in the country's judiciary by appealing to President Abdul Hamid to impeach Chief Justice SK Sinha out of a personal issue between them.
Justice Shamsuddin accused the Chief Justice (CJ) of being'"biased" against him by not including him to any Bench in recent weeks and asking him to complete writing the pending judgements before he goes into retirement on September 17. Justice Shamsuddin refused to comply, and accused the Chief Justice of breaching his oath of justice and violating the Constitution. In fact Justice Shamsuddin violated his oath s justice by making his letters to the President public through the media.
But we cannot understand how Justice Shamsuddin, being an SC judge, choose to file such allegations against the Chief Justice and appeal to the President to impeach him. This is a audacity, impertinence and violation of the code of conduct of a judge. Instead of the Chief Justice, Mr Shamsuddin needs to be impeached for tarnishing the image and dignity of the judiciary.
Justice Shamsuddin also did several other misdeeds or acts of misconduct by releasing illegally recorded audio clips of conversations between himself and the CJ in a contempt of court case against the Daily Janakantha and later distributing copies of letters exchanged between them to the journalists. This amounts to gross misconduct on the part of a sitting judge and an aspersion on the judiciary.
Justice Shamsuddin claimed to have sent the copies of the letter he sent to the President also to the Prime Minister, Law Minister and others. But surprisingly, the offices of the President and the Law Minister have denied having received any such letter.
However, whether they received the letter or not, Justice Shamsuddin's letter has little significance to the whole context of the burgeoning game plan drawn by the retiring judge. The question is whether Shamsuddin can make such a move to seek the impeachment of the head of the judiciary, has he worked within his right or oath as a judge? It's a matter for the President and his office to evaluate and decide.
Apparently Justice Shamsuddin acted beyond his permitted parameters completely out of personal grudge or revenge against the CJ for asking him to complete writing the pending judgements before he goes into retirement.
There is no doubt that the CJ acted prudently - though Justice Shamsuddin mentioned in reply to the President's letter that there are precedence of writing judgements after retirement. But his case is different. Shamsuddin holds British citizenship and it makes it very likely that going into retirement he may step out of the country and go into virtual oblivion. Then it will be extremely difficult for the CJ and his office to get hold of him for writing the judgments, which will cause immense sufferings to justice seekers.
Justice Shamsuddin's tendency to delay or avoid writing the pending judgements has been quite evident in the judiciary and that's why the CJ had rightly asked him to finish his job first. But Shamsuddin would not take heed and instead jumped into a gamble which has not only demeaned the image and honour of the judiciary but probably may have set a bad example in the history of the judiciary in the country.
On the premises of the judiciary, Justice Shamsuddin is also known for creating controversies and his latest overture has reconfirmed this. He has acted beyond judicial norms.
Now, many in the judicial business feel that Shamsuddin should be paid in his own coin. He should be impeached for disregarding the CJ and trying to make fabricated allegations against him. Justice SK Sinha as a highly respected person was promoted to CJ by the President. Many in the judiciary feel that because Justice Shamsuddin failed to become the CJ he is throwing his salvos against the CJ and the supreme judiciary.
Justice Shamsuddin's audacity must be addressed properly, his attempt to fracture judiciary and tarnish its image should not be ignored. He is going into retirement after long years in service. Due to his controversial and condemnable role he will not get a befitting farewell by the Supreme Court Bar and his colleagues.
Judges are not beyond the law. Justice Shamsuddin probably had forgotten this truth.

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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