Hyderabad: Death toll in the Delhi’s communal violence has gone upto 42 on Friday, February 28, 2020. After days of violence, the police and paramilitary has finally been able to take control over the situation. 45 companies of paramilitary forces, which include ITBP, BSF and the CRPF have been deployed in Delhi.
The Delhi Police and the Union Home Ministry have come under severe criticism for not controlling the violence in Northeast Delhi. Supreme court held Delhi police responsible for the riots. “Police have to act immediately to handle the situation” stated Justice KM Joseph during the hearing of the plea in the Supreme Court.
During the hearing on Delhi violence, Justice Muralidhar slammed Delhi Police for failing to register FIRs against alleged hate speeches by three BJP leaders. The bench said that when the police can register 11 FIRs in connection with incidents of violence, and questioned why it did not register FIRs against BJP ministers Anurag Thakur, Parvesh Verma, and Kapil Mishra who had allegedly given hate speeches.
Hours after he grills, Justice Muralidhar gets transfer orders from Delhi Court to Punjab and Haryana High court. Upon this act, social media went crazy claiming that the judge was transferred immediately, as he spoke against the government.
Even Ms. Priyanka Gandhi tweeted “The midnight transfer of Justice Muralidhar isn’t shocking given the current dispensation, but it is certianly sad & shameful. Millions of Indians have faith in a resilient & upright judiciary, the government’s attempts to muzzle justice & break their faith are deplorable.”
The midnight transfer of Justice Muralidhar isn’t shocking given the current dispensation, but it is certianly sad & shameful.
Millions of Indians have faith in a resilient & upright judiciary, the government’s attempts to muzzle justice & break their faith are deplorable. pic.twitter.com/KKt4IeAMyv
— Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (@priyankagandhi) February 27, 2020
Many News Media outlets, social media users accused the government for malicious attempt to save themselves. But a few also shared a photos claiming that Justice Muralidhar was not transferred for criticizing Delhi Police, But the transfer order was given on February 12, 2020, many days before the Delhi riots.
According to the document shared in the tweet of Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, there is no mention of any date by which the honourable Justice needs to join the Court of Haryana and Punjab. It only states that he is directed to assume charge of his office in the Punjab and Haryana High court.
Condemning the comments, the Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad clarified that the transfer of Justice Muralidhar was transferred on the recommendation of Supreme Court Collegium. Supreme Court Collegium transferred Justice Dr. S Muralidhar of the Delhi High Court to the Punjab and Haryana High Court, according to an order uploaded on the top court’s website.
According to the 5 part tweets made by the Law Minister, “Transfer of Hon’ble Justice Muralidhar was done pursuant to the recommendation dated 12.02.2020 of the Supreme Court collegium headed by Chief Justice of India. While transferring the judge consent of the judge is taken. The well settled process have been followed.”
Transfer of Hon’ble Justice Muralidhar was done pursuant to the recommendation dated 12.02.2020 of the Supreme Court collegium headed by Chief Justice of India. While transferring the judge consent of the judge is taken. The well settled process have been followed.
— Ravi Shankar Prasad (@rsprasad) February 27, 2020
According to a report published in The Hindu on February 21, 2020, The Supreme Court Collegium recommended the transfer of Delhi High Court judge Justice S. Muralidhar to the Punjab and Haryana High Court only after taking his consent.
As quoted in the article by The Hindu, ‘Sources’ told that ‘a transfer out of the Delhi High Court, his parent court, is considered a step closer towards his future elevation as the Chief Justice of a High Court’ and a judge normally cannot be the Chief Justice in his parent court.
So, though the timing of the transfer is completely wrong as the honorable judge is in the middle of Delhi riots case, the transfer of Justice Muralidhar was on the cards from a very long time, and the decision took place only after his consent, even before the Delhi riots started.
Therefore, the claim that he is transferred overnight as he criticized the Delhi police over their inaction during the riots is FALSE.