Like it is said good people are either transferred from the position they hold or are killed. And it seems the same thing happened with Delhi High Court Judge S Muralidhar. The noted judge who pulled up the Delhi police for inaction during the violence in North-east Delhi that left 38 dead and over 200 injured, was overnight transferred by the Ministry of Law to the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Wednesday.
Just about two weeks after it was recommended by the collegium of the Supreme Court on February 12, the Central government issued a transfer notice to Justice Muralidhar at around 11 pm on Wednesday night. The government notification read, “In exercise of the power conferred by Clause (1) of Article 222 of the Constitution of India, the President after consultation with the Chief Justice of India is pleased to transfer Justice S Muralidhar, Judge of the Delhi High Court, as a Judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court and to direct him to assume charge of his office in the Punjab and Haryana High Court.”
May this be noted that a transfer notification does not give any time to a judge to join his new post which was seen to infer. Besides justice Murlidhar, the central government also issued transfer notice to two more judges namely Justice Ranjit V More (Bombay) and Justice Ravi Malimath (Karnataka).
Soon after Muralidhr’s transfer notice, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and general secretary Priyanka Gandhi took to Twitter and launched a scathing attack on the Central government over the timing of transfer. Rahul Gandhi took to Twitter and wrote, “Remembering the brave Judge Loya, who wasn’t transferred.”
Justice Loya who was hearing the high-profile Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case of Gujarat in which Home Minister Amit Shah was one of the accused died of a cardiac arrest in Nagpur on December 1, 2014 when he had gone to attend the wedding of a colleague’s daughter.
On the other hand, Priyanka Gandhi wrote, “The midnight transfer of Justice Muralidhar isn’t shocking given the current dispensation, but it is certianly sad and shameful. Millions of Indians have faith in a resilient and upright judiciary; the government’s attempts to muzzle justice and break their faith are deplorable.”
The midnight transfer of Justice Muralidhar isn’t shocking given the current dispensation, but it is certianly sad & shameful.
Millions of Indians have faith in a resilient & upright judiciary, the government’s attempts to muzzle justice & break their faith are deplorable. pic.twitter.com/KKt4IeAMyv
— Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (@priyankagandhi) February 27, 2020
Earlier on Wednesday, Justice Muralidhar passed a series of orders regarding to the violence in North-East Delhi and said, “Another 1984-like situation cannot be allowed to happen in the city under its watch.”
“We have to be alert,” said Muralidhar as he ordered safe passage for the collection of the bodies of the deceased, setting up of adequate number of helplines and give shelter to people who have been displaced among other things.
The riots in North-East Delhi which killed more than 30 people including a head constable Ratan Lal injured over after clashes between pro-and anti-CAA protests turned violent.