[Assam] [WaterWatch] Re: Aren't court orders for Interlining of Rivers suspect?

Chan Mahanta cmahanta at charter.net
Thu Sep 27 06:59:47 PDT 2007

At first glance that might sound like a reasonable demand.

But a time will soon come when there will appear a need to judge 
these judges too. Then what?

The answer therefore lies in thoroughly evaluating the institutions 
of state and reforming them, with
built -in, trustworthy and achievable ways to hold individuals accountable.

That however is easier wished than done. Because it would require 
overhauling the ENTIRE system of governance from the ground up.

Question is if Indian intelligentsia is up to it? If they REALLY care?


At 8:43 PM +0530 9/26/07, rohit pathania wrote:
>There is an immediate need to set up a tribunal that can judge the 
>judges and make them accountable. It should not have any judges, but 
>should have eminent citizens of society beyond the political circles 
>from various spheres of life in this tribunal, so as to make it 
>fair. Also, it should have the power to indict the judges if their 
>investigations find them guilty of nepotism and corruption charges.
>>  Moderator's Note: Following Justice B N Kirpal's order in October
>>  2002,to Government of India to undertake Networking of Rivers 
>>project assuming consensus among Indian states,Justice 
>>Y.K.Sabharwal pursued the case despite unanimous rejection of the 
>>project by Kerela Assembly that clearly showed that the assumption 
>>was misplaced.
>>  Justice Sabharwal directions set in motion the process of sealing of
>>  properties in designated residential areas of Delhi which were 
>>being used for commercial purposes. This sealing went on 
>>relentlessly under the continuous supervision of Chief Justice 
>>Sabharwal's bench, monitored and directed by a Court appointed 
>>monitoring committee. When the government came up with a new master 
>>plan of Delhi 2021 which allowed mixed use and commercial activity 
>>in many of the areas which were designated as residential, Justice 
>>Sabharwal orders on the sealing continued.
>>  Some of the facts which were not publicly known was that his two 
>>sons, Chetan and Nitin had entered into partnerships with big Mall 
>>and Commercial complex developers and had become big Commercial 
>>complex developers themselves during that time. It was clear that 
>>these orders were giving direct benefit to his sons' business. His 
>>orders are against the principles of natural justice, which say 
>>that no judge can hear a case in which he is personally interested. 
>>There was a serious conflict of interest in this case which renders 
>>his orders a nullity. It is in fact arguable that his dealing with 
>>this case in such circumstances involves an offence under the 
>>Prevention of Corruption Act.
>>  At the same time, it was also found that several plots were 
>>allotted to the Companies or relatives of Justice Sabharwal and 
>>which needs to be investigated to see if undue favour was shown to 
>>them and if so whether there was any quid pro quo in terms of 
>>judicial orders.
>>  The facts thrown up in this case have very disturbing implications 
>>about the integrity of our judiciary in the highest places.
>>  When MIDDAY newspaper reported the matter in May and June 2007 
>>about Pawan Impex, the company of owned by sons of Justice 
>>Sabharwal which saw amazing rise in its fortune during the last two 
>>years. The reporters who reported it and their editor have been 
>>sentenced by the court.
>>  Here is what the reporters submitted to the court and argued that 
>>truth is defence in the case of Contempt:
>>  The story in question carried by Mid-Day newspaper on the 18th of 
>>May 2007, was a follow up of an earlier story carried by the same 
>>newspaper on 2 May 2007. In the issue of 2 May 2007, we had carried 
>>a story titled "Injustice" which essentially said that the former 
>>Chief Justice of India Justice Y.K. Sabharwal's sons owned three 
>>commercial companies, Pawan Impex, Sug Exports, and Sabs Exports 
>>whose registered offices were at the Punjabi Bagh residence of 
>>Justice Sabharwal, at the time when he was ordering the sealing of 
>>commercial premises running from residential areas.
>  >
>>  Further investigation into the matter by the reporters of Mid-Day 
>>led to the discovery of some further startling facts. It was 
>>discovered that these companies had shifted their registered office 
>>to the official residence of Justice Sabharwal at 6, Moti Lal Nehru 
>>Place for about 10 months during 2004 while Justice Sabharwal was a 
>>judge of the Supreme Court of India.
>>  Further investigation into the matter also revealed that on 
>>October 23, 2004, one Kabul Chawla, who happens to be the promoter 
>>and owner of Business Park Town Planners (BPTP), a real estate 
>>development company which had promoted and developed a large number 
>>of shopping malls and commercial complexes in the city of Delhi, 
>>became a director in one of the companies promoted by Justice 
>>Sabharwal's sons called Pawan Impex Pvt. Ltd. At the same time, the 
>>registered office of this company was shifted back from the 
>>official residence of Justice Sabharwal, to his personal residence 
>>at Punjabi Bagh. Soon thereafter on February 12, 2005, the wife of 
>>Kabul Chawla, Anjali Chawla was also inducted as a director of this 
>>  Soon after the Chawlas were inducted as directors, in June 2006, 
>>both Kabul Chawla and his wife Anjali Chawla acquired 750,000 
>>shares each in Pawan Impex Pvt Ltd. At this time the Share capital 
>>of Pawan Impex was increased from Rs. 1 Lakh to Rs. 3 Crores. Thus, 
>>as on 31st of September 2006, the shareholding in Pawan Impex Pvt. 
>>Ltd. was equally divided between the two sons of Justice Sabharwal 
>>and Kabul Chawla and his wife Anjali. Each of them owned 750,000 
>>shares each in this company promoted by Justice Sabharwal's sons. 
>>Thus the Chawlas, who are one of the main promoters of shopping 
>>malls in Delhi, became equal partners in the Company of Justice 
>>Sabharwal's sons.
>>  The documents also showed that soon after the share capital of 
>>Pawan Impex was increased from Rs. 1 Lakh to Rs. 3 Crores (after 
>>the induction of the Chawlas and their investment in the company), 
>>the company took a loan of Rs. 28 Crores from the Union Bank of 
>>India at F14/15 Connaught Place (who happens to be a tenant of BPTP 
>>of the Chawlas).
>>  The documentary evidence attesting to the above facts discovered on
>>  investigation by the reporters of Midday was obtained from the 
>>official website of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs of the 
>>Government of India. This website contains the documents which have 
>>been filed by Pawan Impex Pvt. Ltd. regarding the shareholding, the 
>>directors, and the changes in the registered address of these 
>>companies. Copies of these documents attesting to the above facts 
>>as obtained by Mid-Day from the official website of the Ministry of 
>>Corporate Affairs of the Government of India have been annexed
>>  with the Affidavit of Mrs. Vitusha Oberoi, Editor of Mid-Day Delhi 
>>and the Deponent craves liberty to refer to an rely upon the said 
>>  The story of Mid-Day in question is based on the above documents and
>>  legitimate inferences which can be made from these documents. 
>>There had earlier been a number of reports and allegations that the 
>>Shopping Mall developers stood to gain enormously from the sealing 
>>of shops and commercial establishments functioning from residential 
>>areas which took place on Justice Sabharwal's orders. As 
>>responsible journalists we thought it to be our public duty to 
>>bring the above facts to the knowledge of the people, which 
>>appeared to show judicial impropriety at the highest level.
>We also spoke to some senior lawyers of the country who almost 
>unanimously opined that if the above facts were true, the matter 
>needed further investigation in public interest. Their comments as 
>given to us were also carried by us in Mid-Day. There have been a 
>number of reports about Corruption in the Judiciary and the country 
>has been exercised on the issue of judicial accountability. There 
>have also been other reports about improper allotments of Plots in 
>Noida to Justice Sabharwal's daughter in law which were also 
>reported widely in the media. These reports were based on statements 
>made by a Cabinet
>>  Minister and Senior advocate of the Supreme Court.
>It was in these circumstances, that we felt that it was our public 
>duty to bring the above facts to the knowledge of the people of this 
>country. There was no malicious intention on our part to bring down 
>the reputation of the judiciary.
>>  However, the facts discovered by us presented a disturbing picture 
>>of judicial impropriety in a particular case which we felt, needed 
>>to be brought to the attention of the people since it involves 
>>matter of enormous public interest.
>>  In such a scenario, is it contempt of court if someone said, all 
>>such orders including in the case of Networking of Rivers are 
>>  Moderator
>>  "Joshua B. Good" 
>><<mailto:editor%40bannedmagazine.com>editor at bannedmagazine.com 
>>  wrote:
>>  Four journalists of the New Delhi Mid-Day newspaper were sentenced to
>>  four months in jail for exposing alleged corrupt land deals by former
>>  India Supreme Court Chief Justice Y.K. Sabharwal. Arundhati Roy came
>>  out supporting the journalists. Roy also was held in contempt of court
>>  over her criticism of the Narmada dam ruling by the India Supreme Court.
>>  To read the full story go to:
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