Justice Shah dubs SC verdict in Loya case 'utterly wrong'

Former Delhi High Court Chief Justice A P Shah on Tuesday came down heavily on the Supreme Court judgement in Judge B H Loya case, saying it was "utterly wrong and jurisprudentially incorrect" as an inquiry into his death was "evidently needed" but was "openly avoided".

Speaking at the release of veteran politician Arun Shourie's book 'Anita Gets Bail: What Are Our Courts Doing? What Should We Do About Them?' here, Shah claimed the apex court "granted a sort of an acquittal" without the benefit of the judgement of a trial court.

"The Judge Loya case, which Shourie discusses in great detail, is another where an inquiry was evidently needed, but was openly avoided. The judgement - in my opinion – is utterly wrong, and jurisprudentially, incorrect on so very many counts," he said.

The Supreme Court had last month rejected plea for an independent probe into the mysterious death of Judge Loya who was hearing the "fake" encounter killing of Sohrabuddin Sheikh in which BJP president Amit Shah was also facing accusations.

Countering the judgement, he said much of the judgement was spent attacking the motivations of petitioners. "But has the court properly analysed the use of the PIL in this particular case? Who, truly, has misused the PIL here?" he said.

He also said the Supreme Court has evolved a whole new jurisprudence regarding the statement of a judge. It says that the statements of judicial officers should be accepted on the face of it, as their statements have a "ring of truth" about them, he added.

Non-negotiable

Former Chief Justice of India R M Lodha said independence of judiciary is "under challenge" and that signal has to come from the top that this is non-negotiable. "Otherwise, the day is not far when judicial system will be chaotic," he said.

On the controversy surrounding the master of roster, he said, the Chief Justice is the master of roster but wondered whether it gave him the authority "to do as he wants". "Can he act arbitrarily?" he asked, insisting that allocation of cases in Supreme Court has to be fair.

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Justice Shah dubs SC verdict in Loya case 'utterly wrong'

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