Law intern deposes before Supreme Court panel in sexual harassment case
A young lawyer, who has alleged she was sexually harassed by a retired apex court judge with whom she was interning December last year, on Monday deposed before a panel constituted by the Supreme Court suo motu to ascertain veracity of her allegations. The three-judge panel had last week issued a notice asking her to appear personally and record her statement. The lawyer reportedly turned up in the court premises around 4.30 pm and was seen leaving around 7 pm.
The lawyer, in a blog she wrote on November 6 for the Journal of Indian Law and Society, and later in an interview to website Legally India, had alleged that she was sexually harassed in December by a Supreme Court judge with whom she was interning. The woman, who graduated from Kolkata's National University of Juridical Sciences this year, did not name the judge but said he "retired recently".
Taking the suo motu note of the reports, Chief Justice P Sathasivam had a day ago formed the committee to go all the aspects of the matter and prepare a report. "We will take action on the basis of the report. The committee starts working from Monday in the evening and they are going to issue notices to all the persons concerned," said the CJI.
The CJI pointed out that the veracity of the allegations required to be ascertained first and that records relating to interns or advocates associated with judges and their entry to court or the chambers of judges will also be examined. The Committee comprises Justices R M Lodha, H L Dattu and Ranjana Desai.