The In House panel investigating the allegations of sexual harassment against Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi has given him a clean chit in the case. The accusations against the chief justice were levelled by a former woman employee of the Supreme Court.
The three-member panel headed by Justice SA Bobde said in its report that it had found no substance in the allegations contained in the complaint made by the woman against Gogoi.
Other members of the in house panel are Justices Indira Banerjee and Indu Malhotra. The Secretary General of Supreme Court of India in a statement said the report has been submitted to “next senior judge competent to receive the report” as well as to the Chief Justice of India.
The statement said the in-house committee has found no substance in the allegations made by the former Supreme Court employee. The statement also while said the report filed by the panel would not be made public.
Chief Justice Gogoi had Wednesday appeared before an in-house inquiry committee looking into allegations of sexual harassment levelled against him by a former woman employee of the Supreme Court.
Truth is the ultimate power. When the truth comes around, all the lies have to run and hide.
— RanjanGogoiCJI (@RanjanGogoiCJI) May 6, 2019
The incident came in light after an affidavit filed by the victim. According to a news wire, the affidavit states that CJI Gogoi asked “what she can do for her?” for appointing his brother in law. However, the Afternoon Voice has done the research of day and date wise detail of incident.
About the accuser:
However, the 35-year-old woman was an employee at the Supreme Court. She used to do “typing and documentation” in the legislation section of the court’s library. During court hours, she said, she was sent to help court masters in “arranging books, judgments” required for different cases. In 2015, she was posted in Justice Vikramjit Sen’s court for around 8-10 months. In October 2016, she was sent to Justice Gogoi’s court to fill in for another junior court assistant who had gone on leave. She said that her performance was appreciated during this period and that her appraisal reports were rated “good” and “very good” for the years 2014-15 and 2015-16.
Here is how it all took place:
June 2018: She and her husband to attend Nobel winner Kailash Satyarthi’s book launch in at the Constitution Club, New Delhi, where Gogoi was going to be speaking. When she expressed her reluctance as her LLB final semester exam the same day, he insisted that they come.
Allegation: The woman alleged that Justice Gogoi would call and text her multiple times during the day for work – “during non court hours and even during the late evenings” when she was at home.
August, 2018: Justice Gogoi expressed his wish to appoint her in his residence office as his workload would increase once he took over as the CJI in October. He told her that the reason he was appointing her at his residence was her good work, although she was a junior employee.
August 11, 2018: She started her work at Justice Gogoi’s residence office from. There, she said that she first started feeling a little awkward at all the exclusive attention she got from him but ignored her misgivings.
The incident took place
October 10, 2018: Justice Gogoi called her to his office and told her that her brother-in-law had been appointed despite being “found to be medically unfit as traces of blood were detected in his urine test.” The Wire tried reaching Dr. Shyama Gupta, chief medical officer of the Supreme Court, to verify the claim. However, no one at her office picked up the calls. The woman told Justice Gogoi that she was really grateful for what he did for her. The judge went on to compliment her on her looks and then, she alleges, touched her in a way that made her uncomfortable.
October 12 onwards: the former JCA claimed that Justice Gogoi’s behaviour changed. He restrained his interactions with her and often spoke to her in front of other people. She said she was in extreme stress and although she did not want to work with Justice Gogoi anymore, she could not muster enough courage to express her wish at office.
October 22, 2018: She claimed that she was transferred thrice in a matter of weeks – first on to the Centre for Research and Planning (CRP), then to the Admin Material Section,
November 19, 2018: however, she was issued a memorandum that a disciplinary enquiry was being initiated against her.
December 13, 2018: She was served a notice by the registrar and inquiry officer Surya Pratap Singh that proceedings of her inquiry would happen at 10.30 a.m. And that if she fails to appear at the “appointed time and place, inquiry shall proceed ex parte.”
December 21, 2018: She was dismissed from service by registrar Deepak Jain after the inquiry committee conducted ex parte proceedings and found her guilty in all three charges on the basis of two witnesses – one, her supervisor Padma Sundar, and assistant registrar Indira Manuja.
Her family in a soup
December 29, 2018: Her victimisation, she said, did not end there. A week after she was dismissed, her husband and one of her brothers-in-law – also a constable in Delhi police – were suspended from service. The reason was not specified at the time.
December 31, 2018: The husband was informed by Naresh Solanki, SHO, Tilak Marg, that a complaint has been made against him for making unsolicited calls to the CJI’s office and that a departmental inquiry could be initiated against them.
January 9, 2018: The husband received an order from the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Vikas Puri.
January 11, 2019: The woman said that it is after this that Naresh Solanki, the SHO of Tilak Marg police station, tried to engineer a truce between her and the CJI. She said that Solanki, after discussion with her and her husband, took her to the CJI’s residence on the night.
March 9, 2018: When she and her family went to Tilak Marg police station in Delhi, they were informed that one Naveen Kumar of Jhajjar, Haryana had charged them with bribery. The FIR says that Kumar paid her Rs 50,000 for a job in the Supreme Court.
March 10, 2019: A police team led by Devender Kumar, the then SHO of Tilak Marg police station, brought the husband handcuffed.
March 12, 2019: the former JCA got bail from the chief metropolitan magistrate court in Patiala House, New Delhi.
March 2019: She herself was arrested in a case of bribery that was registered in – almost three months after her dismissal from the Supreme Court.
April 22, 2019: News Broke out on about a former employee of the Supreme Court has made sexual harassment allegations against Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi in an affidavit
April 19, 2019: The affidavit was sent; she spurned what she claimed were inappropriate advances last October.
May 6, 2019: Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi has been cleared by a panel of three judges of allegations of sexually harassing a former court employee. There is “no substance” in the allegations, ruled the in-house committee of the Supreme Court, which heard the allegations.