Thursday, September 19, 2019 | ePaper

Transparency is called for in the withdrawal of three SC judges

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To withdraw of three Supreme Court judges of long experience at one swoop is a matter of great concern. It will be difficult to find many instances elsewhere. It is an earthquake.

It could be good or most shocking depending upon the situations requiring action against exposed to the people. All that is heard being said is that they have been barred from sitting for misconduct. Such an expression has all kinds of meaning.

When asked the Law Minister he said he knows nothing. The Attorney General is more explicit. His view is it was done by President and the Chief Justice. But the Registrar of the Supreme Court is learned to have refused to answer any question. To be evasive is understandable but must not last long.

The judges concerned, namely Justice Salma Masud Chowdhury, Justice Quazi Reza-Ul Hoque and Justice AKM Zahirul Hoque are understandably embarrassed and preferred to remain quite. They have gone on leave.

Because the highest judiciary is affected, the surrounding steps against the judges should be brought to light. Whether their cases have been placed before the Supreme Judicial Council is also a matter of great interest. The government is not ready to agree that the Supreme Judicial Council exists at all. But the Supreme Judicial Council still exists for proceeding against the sitting Supreme Court judges. When action against the judges has been made public, the lawyers and the general public see no cogent reason why more should not be known.

It is important to explain matter also for the fact that the Supreme Court exercises power of superintendence over the lower judiciary. Unless it is sure that no damage was intended to Supreme Court there will be confusion. The position cannot remain unexplained in respect of such important public offices.

Although no such allegation of corruption is heard to have been brought in respect of the judges but if it is part of a move to fight corruption in highest places it can be appreciated if followed in others field of highest places.

Who does not know about rampant corruption in other highest places. Many such corrupt ones are already worried and trying to find excuses to go on visits to other countries or leave the country at the first opportunity. Such a general move will be praiseworthy, but may not be easy.

The position of the judges of the highest court is highly sensitive. Everybody in authority has to be extremely careful to leave no room for rumour or misunderstanding. Action against three judges of the Supreme Court is certainly alarming for its strong image and public faith.

Nobody will say that the judiciary is untouched by epidemic of corruption and abuse of power even then if anywhere in public life there is public faith it is still in the Supreme Court.

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