Home / News / India /  Justice Indu Malhotra joins panel probing sexual harassment charge against CJI Ranjan Gogoi

Following the recusal of Justice NV Ramana, Justice Indu Malhotra has been appointed as the third member in the Panel which shall conduct an in-house inquiry into the sexual harassment allegations against Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi.

The Panel was announced on Tuesday evening which comprised of Justices B A Bopde, Indrani Banerjee and NV Ramana. Notice was sent to the former employee of the Chief Justice who had sent a letter to all the judges of the Supreme Court last week alleging harassment and victimisation. The Supreme Court Secretary was directed to collect and prepare all the documents related to the case. The case proceedings are to ensue from Friday.

The woman also sent a letter to the panel on Wednesday evening expressing her concerns regarding the constitution of the committee. She claimed that Justice Ramana and Chief Justice Gogoi are close family friends hence Ramana's opinion would be prejudiced against her. She also stated that as per the Vishakha guidelines and the POSH act the panel hearing her case needs to have majority women and an external member in the panel.

Justice NV Ramana recused himself from the panel on Thursday afternoon and there were reports that a new member would be appointed by the evening.

Ramana has clearly stated in it's recusal letter that, "My decision to recuse is only based on an intent to avoid any suspicion that this institution will not conduct itself in keeping with the highest standards of judicial proprietry and wisdom. It is the extraordinary nature of the complaint and the evolving circumstances and discourse that underly my decision to recuse and not the grounds cited by the complainant per se."

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