Justice in our conscience, don't need certificate from counsel: SC in Loya case

Justice in our conscience, don't need certificate from counsel: SC in Loya case

"Justice lies in our heart and conscience. We don't need any certificate from any arguing counsel for it," the Supreme Court said on Thursday.

The court expressed anguish over the remark by senior counsel Dushyant Dave where he questioned a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud for putting forth explanations for every suspicion he raised over the circumstances before the death of Mumbai judge B H Loya on December 1, 2014, in Nagpur.

Giving his rejoinder arguments, Dave, who represented the Bombay Lawyers Association that sought an independent probe into the death, raised objections over the court putting so many questions to him and giving alternative explanations as to why the chief justice's car or the Bombay High Court Registrar's car was not used for carrying Loya to hospital when he suffered heart attack.

"We will ask the counsel what we want to. We will not go by the counsel's suggestion. There is no veneering of justice here. We don't want any certificate from any counsel. Justice lies in our heart and conscience," Justice Chandrachud, the former chief justice of Bombay High Court, said.

The top court also took exception to Dave's bid to draw a parallel between Loya's case and that of Sunanda Pushkar, wife of Congress MP Shashi Tharoor. He asked why the court did not issue notice in the Loya case while one was issued to the Delhi Police in Sunanda case while keeping the issue of maintainability alive. The notice was issued on a special leave petition filed by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy.

"We don't have to record everything in our order. We issued notice to the Delhi Police (in Sunanda) case as they did not file their report before the Delhi High Court on the date promised by them," said Justice Khanwilkar, who was part of the bench led by Justice Arun Mishra that admitted Swamy's petition for consideration.

Fresh perspective

Justice Chandrachud said the court will examine all the documents provided by the Maharashtra government in the Loya case. "To allow the state to file an affidavit now may help them in providing a fresh perspective. We have to see adequacy or inadequacy of inquiry conducted by the state on the basis of documents. Our power is untrammelled," the bench said.

"The moments those documents are filed by the counsel, it bears authority and veracity on behalf of the client and carries own consequences. We are going into all aspects of the matter. We are not saying what they supplied is gospel truth," Justice Chandrachud said.

Advocate Prashant Bhushan, representing NGO CPIL, contended the histopathology and the ECG report of judge Loya, that were not filed by the Maharashtra government, ruled out the possibility that he died of heart attack.

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