Katju allegations echo in Rajya Sabha
The Rajya Sabha was disrupted Wednesday following an uproar by AIADMK members over Press Council of India chairman Markandey Katju's allegations of corruption in the judiciary. Clarifications were also sought from former prime minister Manmohan Singh.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu said that the revelations by former Supreme Court judge Markandey Katju, showed how the government was functioning during the UPA regime.
"His (Manmohan Singh) silence is an indication that there is something to hide. So in the interest of justice, the former prime minister should come out and make a categorical statement about what exactly has happened. Was he really under pressure?" Naidu told reporters.
"All these things people of India have got a right to know. That will help enhance the image of the judiciary and also remove the misgivings if any by such a statement from the former PM," the minister said.
The AIADMK Wednesday raised the issue of corruption in the judiciary in the Rajya Sabha and sought an explanation from former prime minister Manmohan Singh.
Citing the revelations made by Justice Katju, AIADMK leader V. Maitreyan said Manmohan Singh should give a clarification on the issue.
"Manmohan Singh owes an answer to the country. He should break his silence. His silence only confirms the allegation," Maitreyan said.
Deputy Chairman P.J. Kurien, however, said that the former prime minister was not liable to answer.
"He is not the prime minister anymore. He is not expected to answer," said Kurien.
Katju in his blog Sunday said an additional judge of the Madras High Court was appointed during the UPA regime despite an Intelligence Bureau report revealing charges of corruption against him.
The AIADMK members charged their arch-rival DMK of interfering in the appointment of the high court judge when Katju was the chief justice of the Madras High Court in 2004 and sought to know who in the DMK had pressurised the then UPA government not to take action against the judge.
(Posted on 23-07-2014)