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Monday, September 30, 2013

Special Public Prosecutor asked not to appear without justifiable cause = the order dated 10.9.2013 passed by the Government of Karnataka asking Shri G. Bhavani Singh – respondent no.4, Special Public Prosecutor (hereinafter referred to as ‘SPP’) in a pending prosecution against the petitioners not to appear in the said matter; the communication dated 14.9.2013 passed by the Chief Justice of High Court of Karnataka at Bangalore by which the Chief Justice has approved the removal of Shri G. Bhavani Singh as SPP, as well as the consequential order dated 16.9.2013 issued by the State Government removing the respondent no.4 from the post of SPP. 2. A prosecution was launched against the petitioners for having assets disproportionate to their known income in the year 1996-1997 in the State of Tamil Nadu. = The Karnataka Civil Services (General Recruitment) Rules, 1977 authorise the State Government to appoint a retired government servant on contractual basis after meeting certain formalities, for a specific period as may be necessary. So far as judicial officers are concerned, their services are governed by the Karnataka Judicial Services (Recruitment) Rules, 1983 and Rule 3(2) thereof provides the application of the rules framed under any law or proviso under Article 309 of the Constitution to judicial officers, though subject to the provisions of Articles 233, 234 and 235 of the Constitution. The Rules of 1983 stand repealed by the Karnataka Judicial Service (Recruitment) Rules 2004 (hereinafter referred to as the ‘Rules 2004’) and Rule 11(2) thereof reads as under: “11(2). All rules regulating the conditions of service of the members of the State Civil Services made from time to time under any law or the proviso to Article 309 of the Constitution of India shall, subject to Articles 233, 234 and 235 be applicable to the Civil Judges (Junior Division), Civil Judges (Senior Division) and the District Judges recruited and appointed under these rules.” Thus, it is evident that the State Government is competent to appoint the learned Special Judge on contractual basis after his retirement for the period required to conclude the present trial, though with the consultation of the High Court as required under Article 235 of the Constitution. Further, in our humble opinion, such a course must be adopted in the manner prescribed under the Rules 2004 and in view thereof, the matter requires to be considered by the State Government with the consultation of the High Court. 31. Therefore, in view of the aforestated facts, we refer the matter to the High Court of Karnataka to decide on the administrative side as to whether, in order to conclude the trial expeditiously as guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution requires the extension of the services of the learned Special Judge. Considering the urgency of the matter, we request the High Court of Karnataka to take a decision in this regard as early as possible. 32. In view of the above, we are of the considered opinion that the order of removal of Shri G. Bhavani Singh-respondent no.4 is a product of mala fides and the impugned order is not sustainable in the eyes of law as such the same is hereby quashed. 33. With the aforesaid observations/directions, the writ petitions stand disposed of.

                  published in  http://judis.nic.in/supremecourt/imgst.aspx?filename=40840
                    REPORTABLE
                        IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA

                       CRIMINAL ORIGINAL JURISDICTION

                  WRIT PETITION (CRIMINAL) NO. 154 OF 2013



      Selvi J. Jayalalithaa & Ors.
         …Petitioners


                                   Versus


      State of Karnataka & Ors.                          …Respondents



                                    WITH


                  WRIT PETITION (CRIMINAL) NO. 166 OF 2013







                                 1 JUDGMENT




      Dr. B.S. Chauhan, J.



      1.    The petitioners have challenged 
the order dated 10.9.2013 passed
 by the  Government  of  Karnataka  asking  Shri  G.  Bhavani  Singh  – respondent no.4, Special Public Prosecutor (hereinafter referred to as ‘SPP’) in a pending prosecution against the petitioners not to  appear  in the said matter; 
the communication dated 14.9.2013  passed  by  the Chief Justice of High Court of Karnataka at  Bangalore  by  which  the Chief Justice has approved the removal of Shri  G.  Bhavani  Singh  as
 SPP, as well as the consequential order dated 16.9.2013 issued by  the State Government removing the respondent no.4 from the post of SPP.
      2.    A prosecution was launched against the  petitioners  for  having assets disproportionate to their known income  in the  year  1996-1997 in the State of Tamil Nadu.  
Thiru. K. Anbazhagan (respondent  no.  5)
      is a political rival of the petitioner no.1, who is and has  been  the
      Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu on a number of occasions. The petitioners
      approached this Court on 18.11.2003 for transferring the  petitioners’
      trial to the neighbouring  State  of  Karnataka  in  the  interest  of
      justice, on the ground that a fair trial was not possible in the State
      of Tamil  Nadu.  While  transferring  the  matters  to  the  State  of
      Karnataka, this Court for appointment  of  SPP  issued  the  following
      directions:


           “The State of Karnataka in consultation with the  Chief  Justice
           of High Court of Karnataka shall appoint a senior lawyer  having
           experience in criminal trials as public  prosecutor  to  conduct
           these cases.   The  public  prosecutor  so  appointed  shall  be
           entitled to assistance of another lawyer  of  his  choice.   The
           fees and all other expenses of the  Public  Prosecutor  and  the
           Assistant shall be paid by  the  State  of  Karnataka  who  will
           thereafter be entitled to get the same reimbursed from the State
           of Tamil Nadu.”                   (Emphasis added)


      3.    On 19.2.2005, the Government of Karnataka,  after   consultation
      with the Chief Justice of the High Court of Karnataka, appointed  Shri
      B.V. Acharya, a  former  Advocate  General,  as  SPP  to  conduct  the
      prosecution.  On 12.8.2012, Shri Acharya expressed  his  inability  to
      continue as SPP. The Government of Karnataka accepted his  resignation
      in January, 2013 and discharged him from the case.


      4.    The Government of  Karnataka  then  initiated  the  process  for
      appointment of a new SPP and in accordance with the directions of this
      Court, submitted names  of  four  Advocates  to  the  High  Court  for
      consideration by the Chief Justice.


      5.    The Acting Chief Justice of Karnataka High  Court  on  29.1.2013
      recommended the name of Shri G. Bhavani  Singh,  respondent  No.4  for
      appointment though his name was not submitted  by  the  Government  of
      Karnataka. The Government of Karnataka accepted the same and issued  a
      Notification appointing Shri G. Bhavani Singh as SPP.  After  issuance
      of the notification dated 2.2.2013,  Shri  G.  Bhavani  Singh  started
      working and  99  defence  witnesses  were  examined  and  384  defence
      exhibits were marked between  28.2.2013  and  29.7.2013.  The  defence
      commenced arguments on 2.8.2013 and concluded the  same.  However,  it
      was on 13.8.2013 that  respondent  no.5  filed  an  application  under
      Section 301(2) Cr.P.C. The learned Special Judge permitted  respondent
      no.5 vide order dated 21.8.2013 to  file  Memo  of  Arguments  and  to
      render such assistance to the SPP as he may  require.  The  respondent
      no.5 filed two applications on 23.8.2013 before the trial  court,  one
      under Section 309 Cr.P.C. seeking adjournment by 4 weeks  and  another
      under Section 311 Cr.P.C. to recall PW.259, the Investigating  Officer
      (whose examination was over on 24.2.2003) and  to  examine  him  as  a
      court witness.


      6.    On 26.8.2013, the Government of Karnataka issued a  Notification
      withdrawing  the  appointment  of  respondent  no.4  as  SPP   without
      assigning any reason and  without  consulting  the  Chief  Justice  of
      Karnataka High Court.
      7.     The petitioners, apprehending delay  in  the  trial  approached
      this Court challenging the removal of respondent no.4 as SPP by filing
      a Writ Petition (Criminal) No. 145 of 2013 under  Article  32  of  the
      Constitution of India (hereinafter referred to as the ‘Constitution’).
       This Court  issued  notice  to  the  respondents  on  30.8.2013.   On
      6.9.2013, Mr. G.E. Vahanvati, learned Attorney  General  appeared  for
      the State of Karnataka and informed the court  that  the  Notification
      dated 26.8.2013 would be withdrawn with a view to  consult  the  Chief
      Justice of the Karnataka High Court.   In  view  thereof,  the  afore-
      stated writ petition was dismissed as having become infructuous.


      8.    The State Government withdrew the Notification  dated  26.8.2013
      vide Notification dated 10.9.2013 and simultaneously, vide  letter  of
      the same date,  asked Shri G. Bhavani Singh, respondent  no.4  not  to
      appear in the matter before the Special Judge.  The  petitioners  then
      filed the present Writ Petition (Criminal) No. 154 of 2013 challenging
      the said letter written to the  respondent  no.4  and  to  direct  the
      learned Special Judge to conclude the trial.  On 13.9.2013, this Court
      issued notice returnable in ten days and stayed the operation  of  the
      letter being No. LAW 149 LCE 2012 dated 10.9.2013 passed by respondent
      Nos.1-2.
      9.    While the afore-stated writ petition was pending in this  Court,
      the Government  of  Karnataka  consulted  the  Chief  Justice  of  the
      Karnataka High Court for withdrawing  the  appointment  of  respondent
      no.4 as SPP.  The Chief Justice concurred with the view of  the  State
      Government,  vide  communication  dated  14.9.2013   and   thus,   the
      appointment of Shri G. Bhavani Singh stood withdrawn by the Government
      of Karnataka vide Notification No.LAW 149 LCE 2012  dated 16.9.2013.
      10.   Aggrieved, the petitioners have filed Writ  Petition  (Criminal)
      No.166 of 2013,  challenging  the  said  orders  dated  14.9.2013  and
      16.9.2013.


      11.   Both petitions have been  heard together.
                  Shri Shekhar Naphade and Shri U.U. Lalit,  learned  senior
      counsel appearing for the petitioners submitted that it is settled law
      that an accused has a right to a speedy  trial,  as  guaranteed  under
      Article 21 of the Constitution;  the order withdrawing the appointment
      of respondent no.4 as SPP is  a calculated step to protract the  trial
      in view of impending retirement of the learned Special Judge  on  30th
      September, 2013; and any Judge who takes over the matter would require
      considerable time to get familiar  with  the  lengthy  record  as  the
      recorded evidence oral and documentary run into 34000 pages; the trial
      has almost been completed since the entire evidence of the prosecution
      and the defence has  been  recorded  and  statements  of  the  accused
      persons (petitioners) under  Section  313  of  the  Code  of  Criminal
      Procedure, 1973 (hereinafter referred to as ‘Cr.P.C.’) have also  been
      recorded; the withdrawal of appointment of SPP after six months of his
      functioning is motivated by malafides with  a  view  to  protract  the
      trial as there has been  a  change  of  government  in  the  State  of
      Karnataka; the present case being a warrant case under the  Prevention
      of Corruption Act, 1988 (hereinafter referred to as the  ‘Act  1988’),
      final submissions of the defence already stood concluded.  Eventually,
      according to the learned counsel,  the  scheduled  conclusion  of  the
      trial has become impossible and the petitioners face the  prospect  of
      remaining under trial for a long time, which would be to the political
      advantage of their rivals in the ensuing elections. In  view  thereof,
      this court must  quash  the  order  of  withdrawal/revocation  of  the
      appointment of respondent no.4 as SPP and to also further  extend  the
      duration of tenure of the learned Special Judge till the conclusion of
      this trial.


      12.   Shri G.E. Vahanvati, the learned Attorney General submitted that
      the act of revoking the appointment is substantially under Section  21
      of the General Clauses Act and has been made in the like manner to the
      appointment i.e. after consultation with  the  Chief  Justice  of  the
      Karnataka High Court as, contemplated by this Court. The  main  reason
      for revocation of the appointment, according to the  learned  Attorney
      General, was that the  appointment  itself  was  not  made  after  due
      consultation since the name of Shri G.  Bhavani  Singh  did  not  find
      place in any  of  the  four  names  submitted  by  the  Government  of
      Karnataka to the then learned Acting Chief Justice of  Karnataka  High
      Court for appointment as SPP.  In  an  action  contrary  to  the  true
      purpose of consultation, the Acting Chief Justice recommended the name
      of Shri G. Bhavani Singh on his own, thus preventing any  consultation
      on the name.  Further, in exercise of its  extraordinary  power  under
      Article  142  of  the  Constitution,  this  court  cannot  force   the
      Government of Karnataka to allow the  Special  Judge  to  continue  in
      service  after  reaching  the  age  of  superannuation  on  30.9.2013.
      Therefore, the petitions lack merit and are liable to be dismissed.


      13.   Shri Vikas Singh,  learned  senior  counsel  appearing  for  the
      respondent no.5 has submitted that  the  petitioners  themselves  have
      been adopting dilatory tactics in the trial and  it  is  only  in  the
      recent past that they have become very punctual and had  been  forcing
      the learned Special Judge to proceed with the matter  in  haste.   The
      trial has been conducted in an unwarranted manner and  an  example  of
      the same is that the arguments of the defence had been entertained  by
      the learned Special Judge before the  arguments  of  the  prosecution.
      Mr. G. Bhavani Singh had been appointed on the suggestion  of  learned
      Acting Chief Justice of the High Court of Karnataka, though  his  name
      had not been there in the panel sent by the State Government. Thus, in
      the facts and circumstances of the case, no interference is  warranted
      and petitions are liable to be dismissed.


      14.   We have heard learned counsel for all the  parties  and  perused
      the record produced before us by the Karnataka High Court.


      15.   The reason put forth by the Government of Karnataka for removing
      Shri G. Bhavani Singh as SPP appears to be rather unusual.  It may  be
      true that the name of Shri G. Bhavani Singh was not  in  the  list  of
      four names submitted by the Government of Karnataka to the then Acting
      Chief Justice of the High Court  and  the  name  originated  from  the
      Acting Chief Justice, prior to making of appointment  of  SPP  by  the
      Government of Karnataka; but it is equally true that  the  appointment
      was  made  by  the  Government  without  questioning  the  ability  or
      suitability of the incumbent nor the government raised  any  issue  in
      respect of the manner/issue of consultation.  On  the  contrary,  upon
      receiving the recommendation, the Government proceeded to appoint Shri
      G. Bhavani Singh by issuing a Notification without  any  demur.  Apart
      from this the  appointment  continued  un-objected  for  almost  seven
      months.
      16.   Even before us, no issue has been raised by the  respondents  in
      respect  of  the  eligibility,  suitability  or  credibility  of   the
      respondent no.4 as a SPP.
                  In the letter dated 29.1.2013 communicated by the  learned
      Registrar General  of  the  High  Court  of  Karnataka  to  the  State
      Government, the experience of Shri Bhavani Singh has been  recited  as
      under:
                 “Sri G. Bhavani Singh, who is presently working  as  State
           Public Prosecutor-II has standing experience of 38 years at  the
           Bar exclusively on criminal side, he  has  conducted  the  cases
           before the Trial Court as a defence counsel and he has served as
           a Government Pleader from 1977 for a period of  three  years  in
           the High Court of Karnataka and as Additional Public  Prosecutor
           for a period of 3 years and  currently  for  the  past  8  years
           working as State Public  Prosecutor-II  in  the  High  Court  of
           Karnataka.”


      17.    Whenever  consultation  is  mandated  by  law,  it  necessarily
      involves two authorities; one, on whom a duty is cast to  consult  and
      the other who has the corresponding right(s)  to  be  consulted.   The
      grievance  that  there  has  been  no  consultation  or   insufficient
      consultation is normally raised by the authority who has a right to be
      consulted, in this case the Chief Justice.  It is not  legitimate  for
      the party who has a duty to consult and who has failed in  that  duty,
      to make a grievance that there has  been  no  consultation.   This  is
      exactly what has happened in the  present  case.   If  the  Government
      found the name of Shri G. Bhavani Singh, which was sent by the  Acting
      Chief Justice, not acceptable on any ground,  it  was  duty  bound  to
      refer the name back to the Acting Chief Justice along with their views
      and suggestions, which was not done by them.  On  the  contrary,  they
      proceeded to appoint Shri G. Bhavani Singh as SPP without  demur,  who
      had already been a Public Prosecutor  for  several  years.   There  is
      nothing on record to indicate that the  Government  of  Karnataka  had
      been forced by anyone to make the said  appointment.   The  Government
      thus voluntarily acquiesced in the process and is now not entitled  to
      raise this grievance.  The grievance is thus  baseless  and  does  not
      carry any conviction.
                  In the facts and circumstances of the case, the  judgments
      relied upon by the Hon’ble Chief Justice of Karnataka  High  Court  in
      his  communication,  concurring  with  the  suggestion  made  by   the
      Government of Karnataka to withdraw the appointment of respondent no.4
      as SPP, particularly in Chandramouleshwar Prasad  v.  The  Patna  High
      Court & Ors., AIR 1970 SC 370; Union of India v. Sankalchand  Himatlal
      Sheth & Anr., AIR 1977 SC 2328; State of Gujarat  v.  Gujarat  Revenue
      Tribunal Bar Association, AIR 2013 SC 107; and State of Gujarat & Anr.
      v. Justice R.A. Mehta (Retired) &  Ors.,  (2013)  3  SCC  1,  have  no
      application.


      18.   We may record that though some criticism was made of the  letter
      dated 14.9.2013 of  the  Chief  Justice  of  Karnataka  approving  the
      revocation of the appointment of Shri G.  Bhavani  Singh  and  certain
      observations therein, we are not  inclined  to  go  into  the  merits,
      demerits or validity of the letter.  In  the  first  place,  the  said
      letter is not an order that may  affect  any  of  the  rights  of  the
      petitioners.  It  is  merely  an  approval  given  in  the  course  of
      consultation for the removal of Shri G.  Bhavani  Singh  who  has  not
      questioned his removal.  The petitioners have challenged the  validity
      of the action of the State Government removing Shri G.  Bhavani  Singh
      on the ground that fundamental rights  under  Article  21  for  speedy
      trial have been breached thereby.  In the  circumstances,  it  is  not
      necessary to pronounce on the correctness or otherwise of the contents
      of the letter written by Hon’ble the Chief Justice.
      19.   Mr. Vikas Singh, learned senior counsel appearing for respondent
      No.  5,  referred  to  the  entire  proceedings  after  the  case  was
      transferred  to  the  State  of  Karnataka  and  submitted  that   the
      prosecution  has  been  proceeding  in  a  most  undesirable   manner,
      particularly, after the appointment of Shri G. Bhavani Singh  as  SPP.
      According to the learned counsel, the Investigating Officer  has  been
      permitted to be examined as a defence witness and  the  Special  Judge
      has proceeded to pass certain orders  even  in  the  absence  of  SPP.
      These allegations have been  denied  as  factually  incorrect  by  Mr.
      Naphade, learned senior counsel appearing  for  the  petitioners.   We
      are, however, not inclined to go into all these submissions since they
      would form a subject of entirely different enquiry and  the  allegedly
      illegal proceedings and orders if any, can be  challenged  separately.
      It was also argued by Mr. Vikas  Singh  that  the  Special  Judge  has
      wrongly permitted the defence to commence their arguments  before  the
      arguments of the prosecution.  On the other  hand,  according  to  the
      petitioners, this is entirely permissible in view  of  the  fact  that
      this is a prosecution under Section 13 of the Act 1988 and  being  so,
      any party including the defence is entitled to begin its   submissions
      on the close of its evidence by virtue of Section 314  Cr.P.C.,  which
      applies to warrant cases.  Further, by virtue of Section 5 of the  Act
      1988, cases under this Act are liable to be tried as warrant cases and
      there is therefore, no illegality in this regard.
            The respondents’ contention  that  the  prosecution  alone  must
      begin their arguments is based on Section 234 Cr.P.C.,  which  is  not
      applicable to the present trial at all.  Having regard to the scope of
      the present dispute, we do not consider it necessary or appropriate to
      decide this question either.
      20.    In  the  instant  case,  as  disclosed  during  the  course  of
      arguments, there has been a change of the political party in power  in
      May 2013 and thus, the order of the State Government is alleged to  be
      politically motivated. In our opinion, though there  is  an  undoubted
      power with the Government to withdraw or revoke the appointment within
      Section 21 of the General Clauses Act,  but  that  exercise  of  power
      appears to be vitiated  in  the  present  case  by  malafides  in  law
      inasmuch  as  it  is  apparent  on  record  that  the  switch-over  of
      government in between has resulted in a sudden change of opinion  that
      is abrupt for no discernable legally  sustainable  reason.  The  sharp
      transitional decision was an act  of  clear  unwarranted  indiscretion
      actuated by an intention that does not appear to be  founded  on  good
      faith.
      21.   The record of the case reveals that the  learned  Special  Judge
      had started hearing of the present case on 20.11.2012. He had recorded
      the statements of the accused in December 2012 and January 2013  under
      Section 313 Cr.P.C. The learned Judge examined  99  defence  witnesses
      and 384 defence exhibits were marked before him. The defence concluded
      its argument before the learned Special Judge and  SPP  commenced  the
      final arguments on  23.8.2013.  He  was  interrupted  abruptly  as  on
      26.8.2013, the SPP was asked  not  to  continue  with  the  work.  The
      evidence led in the case is very bulky as it runs into 34000 pages. In
      case a new Judge starts hearing the matter, he is bound to take a long
      time to understand the factual and  legal  niceties  involved  in  the
      case.  Accordingly,  we  have  no  hesitation  in  holding  that   the
      Notification purporting to revoke the appointment of Shri  G.  Bhavani
      Singh as SPP is liable to be struck down.


      22.   In State of Tamil Nadu & Ors. v. K. Shyam  Sunder  &  Ors.,  AIR
      2011 SC 3470, this Court has observed that the Government has to  rise
      above the nexus of vested interests and nepotism  and  eschew  window-
      dressing. The principles of  governance  have  to  be  tested  on  the
      touchstone of justice, equity and  fair  play.  A  decision  may  look
      legitimate but as a matter of fact, if the reasons are  not  based  on
      values but to achieve popular accolade, the decision cannot be allowed
      to operate.  Therefore, unless it is found that the act  done  by  the
      authority earlier in existence is either  contrary  to  the  statutory
      provisions or unreasonable, or is against public interest,  the  State
      should not change its stand merely because the other  political  party
      has come into power. “Political agenda of an individual or a political
      party should not be subversive of rule of law.”
      (See also: M.I. Builders Pvt. Ltd. v. V. Radhey Shyam Sahu & Ors., AIR
      1999 SC 2468; Onkar Lal Bajaj etc. etc.  v.  Union  of  India  &  Anr.
      etc.etc., AIR 2003 SC 2562; State of Karnataka &  Anr.  v.  All  India
      Manufacturers Organization & Ors., AIR 2006 SC 1846;  and  A.P.  Dairy
      Development Corporation Federation v. B. Narasimha Reddy &  Ors.,  AIR
      2011 SC 3298).


      23.   In Smt. S.R. Venkataraman v. Union of India & Anr., AIR 1979  SC
      49, this Court explained the concept of legal  malice  observing  that
      malice in its legal sense means malice such as may be assumed from the
      doing of a wrongful  act  intentionally  but  without  just  cause  or
      excuse, or for want of reasonable or probable cause.


      24.   In Ravi Yashwant Bhoir v. District Collector, Raigad & Ors., AIR
      2012 SC 1339, while dealing with the issue, this Court held:
           "37….. Legal malice" or "malice in  law"  means  something  done
           without lawful excuse. It is a deliberate act  in  disregard  to
           the rights of others. It is  an  act  which  is  taken  with  an
           oblique or indirect object. It is an  act  done  wrongfully  and
           wilfully  without  reasonable  or  probable   cause,   and   not
           necessarily an act done from ill-feeling and  spite.  Mala  fide
           exercise of power does not imply any moral turpitude.  It  means
           exercise of statutory power for "purposes foreign to  those  for
           which it is in law intended." It means  conscious  violation  of
           the law to the prejudice of another, a depraved  inclination  on
           the part of the authority to disregard  the  rights  of  others,
           where intent is manifested by its  injurious  acts.  Passing  an
           order for unauthorized purpose constitutes malice in law.”


      (See also: Kalabharati Advertising v. Hemant  Vimalnath  Narichania  &
      Ors., AIR 2010 SC 3745).


      25.   Thus, it is trite law  that  if  discretionary  power  has  been
      exercised for an unauthorised  purpose,  it  is  generally  immaterial
      whether its repository was acting in good faith or in  bad  faith  and
      the order becomes vulnerable and liable to be set aside.


      26.   Fair trial is the main object of  criminal  procedure  and  such
      fairness should not be hampered or  threatened  in  any  manner.  Fair
      trial entails the interests of the accused,  the  victim  and  of  the
      society. Thus, fair trial must be accorded to  every  accused  in  the
      spirit of the right to life and personal liberty and the accused  must
      get a free and fair, just and reasonable trial on the  charge  imputed
      in a criminal case. Any breach  or  violation  of  public  rights  and
      duties adversely affects the community  as  a  whole  and  it  becomes
      harmful to the society in general.  In all circumstances,  the  courts
      have a duty to maintain public confidence  in  the  administration  of
      justice and such duty is to vindicate and uphold the ‘majesty  of  the
      law’ and the courts cannot turn a blind eye to vexatious or oppressive
      conduct that occurs in relation to criminal proceedings.
            Denial of a fair trial is as much injustice to the accused as is
      to the victim and the society. It necessarily requires a trial  before
      an impartial judge, a fair prosecutor and an  atmosphere  of  judicial
      calm. Since the object of the trial is to  mete  out  justice  and  to
      convict the guilty and protect the innocent, the  trial  should  be  a
      search for the truth and not a bout over technicalities  and  must  be
      conducted under such rules as will protect the innocent and punish the
      guilty. Justice  should not only be done but should be  seem  to  have
      been done. Therefore, free and fair trial is a sine qua non of Article
      21 of the Constitution.  Right to get a fair trial is not only a basic
      fundamental right but a human right also. Therefore, any hindrance  in
      a fair trial could be violative of Article 14 of the Constitution.
            “No trial can be allowed to  prolong  indefinitely  due  to  the
      lethargy of the prosecuting agency or the State machinery and that  is
      the raison d’etre in prescribing the time frame” for conclusion of the
      trial.
           Article 12 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights provides
      for the right to a fair trial what is enshrined in Article 21  of  our
      Constitution.   Therefore,  fair  trial  is  the  heart  of   criminal
      jurisprudence and, in a way, an important facet of a democratic polity
      and is governed by rule of law. Denial of fair trial is crucifixion of
      human rights.  (Vide: Smt. Triveniben v. State of Gujarat, AIR 1989 SC
      1335; A.R. Antulay & Ors, v. R.S. Nayak, AIR 1992  SC  1701;  Raj  Deo
      Sharma (II) v. State of Bihar, (1999) 7 SCC 604; Dwarka Prasad Agarwal
      (D) by L.Rs. & Anr. v. B.D. Agarwal &  Ors.,  AIR  2003  SC  2686;  K.
      Anbazhagan v. Supdt. of Police, AIR 2004  SC  524;  Zahira  Habibullah
      Sheikh (5) v. State of Gujarat, AIR 2006 SC 1367; Noor Aga v. State of
      Punjab & Anr., (2008) 16 SCC 417; Capt.  Amarinder  Singh  v.  Parkash
      Singh Badal & Ors., (2009) 6 SCC 260; Mohd. Hussain @ Julfikar Ali  v.
      State (Govt. of NCT of Delhi), AIR 2012 SC 750;  Sudevanand  v.  State
      through CBI, (2012) 3 SCC 387; Rattiram  &  Ors.  v.  State  of  M.P.,
      (2012) 4 SCC 516; and Natasha Singh v. CBI, (2013) 5 SCC 741).



       27.  It was lastly contended by Mr. Naphade, learned  senior  counsel
       appearing for the petitioners that this  would  be  a  fit  case  for
       exercise of powers under  Article  142  of  the  Constitution  for  a
       direction to the competent authority to  extend  the  tenure  of  the
       Special Judge, who is due to reach the  age  of  retirement  on  30th
       September, 2013.


       28.  The learned Attorney General, however, submitted that this Court
       could not exercise its powers under Article 142 of  the  Constitution
       in the present case since such an exercise would be contrary to  laws
       under  which  each  Judge  must  retire  on  reaching  the   age   of
       superannuation.  In order to fortify his submission, learned Attorney
       General placed reliance  on  the  judgment  of  this  court  in  A.B.
       Bhaskara Rao v. Inspector of Police, CBI Vishakapatnam, (2011) 10 SCC
       259, wherein this court held that the powers under Article 142 of the
       Constitution cannot be exercised by this court  in  contravention  of
       any statutory provisions, though such powers  remain  unfettered  and
       create an  independent  jurisdiction  to  pass  any  order  in  pubic
       interest  to  do  complete  justice.  However,   such   exercise   of
       jurisdiction should not be contrary to any express provision of  law.


            The powers under Article 142 of  the  Constitution  stand  on  a
       wider footing than ordinary inherent powers of the court  to  prevent
       injustice. The constitutional provision has been couched  in  a  very
       wide compass that it prevents “clogging or obstruction of the  stream
       of justice.” However, such powers are used  in  consonance  with  the
       statutory provisions.
       (See also: Teri Oat Estates (P) Ltd. v. UT, Chandigarh & Ors., (2004)
       2 SCC 130; Manish Goel v. Rohini Goel, AIR 2010 SC 1099; and State of
       Uttar Pradesh v. Sanjay Kumar, (2012) 8 SCC 537).


       29.  We find  force  in  the  submissions  advanced  by  the  learned
       Attorney General that this Court generally should not pass any  order
       in exercise of its extraordinary  power  under  Article  142  of  the
       Constitution to do  complete  justice  if  such  order  violates  any
       statutory provisions. We do not  intend  to  say  that  it  would  be
       illegal to extend the term of the special judge, but  that  it  is  a
       matter within the jurisdiction of the State in  accordance  with  the
       relevant law.
                  There is yet an uncontroverted legal principle  that  when
       the statute provides for a particular procedure, the authority has to
       follow the same and cannot be permitted to act  in  contravention  of
       the same. In other words, where a statute requires to  do  a  certain
       thing in a certain way, the thing must be done in that  way  and  not
       contrary to it at all. Other  methods  or  mode  of  performance  are
       impliedly and necessarily  forbidden.  The  aforesaid  settled  legal
       proposition is based on a legal maxim “Expressio unius  est  exclusio
       alterius”, meaning thereby that if a statute provides for a thing  to
       be done in a particular way, then it has to be done  in  that  manner
       and in no  other  manner  and  following  any  other  course  is  not
       permissible.
                  In State of Uttar Pradesh v. Singhara Singh  &  Ors.,  AIR
       1964 SC 358, this court held as under:
           “8. The rule adopted in Taylor v. Taylor (1876) 1 Ch  D  426  is
           well recognised and is founded on sound principle. Its result is
           that if a statute has conferred a power to do  an  act  and  has
           laid down the method in which that power has to be exercised, it
           necessarily prohibits the doing of the act in any  other  manner
           than that which has been prescribed. The  principle  behind  the
           rule is that if this were not so, the statutory provision  might
           as well not have been enacted.”


      (See also: Accountant General, State of Madhya Pradesh v. S.K. Dubey &
      Anr., (2012) 4 SCC 578)
      30.   We have examined the scheme of the statutory provisions in  this
      regard.
The Karnataka Civil Services (General Recruitment) Rules, 1977
authorise the State Government to appoint a retired government servant on contractual basis after meeting certain formalities, for a specific period as may be necessary. So far as judicial officers are concerned, their  services  are  governed  by  the  Karnataka  Judicial  Services  (Recruitment)  Rules,  1983  and  Rule  3(2)  thereof   provides   the application of the rules framed under any law or proviso under Article 309 of the Constitution to judicial officers, though  subject  to  the  provisions of Articles 233, 234 and 235 of the Constitution. 
The Rules of 1983 stand repealed by the Karnataka Judicial Service (Recruitment) Rules 2004 (hereinafter referred to as the  ‘Rules  2004’)   and  Rule 11(2) thereof reads as under:
          
 “11(2). All rules regulating the conditions of  service  of  the
           members of the State Civil Services made from time to time under  any law or the proviso to Article 309  of  the  Constitution  of  India shall, subject to Articles 233, 234 and 235 be  applicable  to the Civil Judges  (Junior  Division),  Civil  Judges  (Senior  Division) and the District Judges recruited and appointed  under   these rules.”

            Thus, it is evident that the State Government  is  competent  to appoint the learned Special  Judge  on  contractual  basis  after  his retirement for the period required  to  conclude  the  present  trial,  though with the consultation of  the  High  Court  as  required  under  Article 235 of the Constitution. Further, in our humble opinion,  such a course must be adopted in the manner prescribed under the Rules 2004  and in view thereof, the matter requires to be considered by the State  Government with the consultation of the High Court.

      31.   Therefore, in view of the aforestated facts, we refer the matter to the High Court of Karnataka to decide on the administrative side as  to whether, in order to conclude the trial expeditiously as guaranteed  under Article 21 of the Constitution requires  the  extension  of  the  services of the learned Special Judge.  Considering the urgency of the  matter, we request the High Court of Karnataka to take a  decision  in  this regard as early as possible.

      32.   In view of the above, we are of the considered opinion that  the  order of removal of  Shri  G.  Bhavani  Singh-respondent   no.4  is  a  product of mala fides and the impugned order is not sustainable in the   eyes of law as such the same is hereby quashed.

      33.   With the aforesaid observations/directions, the  writ  petitions stand disposed of.

                                         .........................………………..J.
                                                                        (DR.
      B.S. CHAUHAN)



                                 .............………………………J.
                                                           (S.A.      BOBDE)


      New Delhi,
      September 30, 2013
      ?


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