New Delhi [India], Mar 5 (ANI): Justice S Muralidhar, the judge who was recently transferred from Delhi High Court, on Thursday said that the transfer was communicated to him by the CJI on February 17, adding that he did not object to the decision as he was fine with moving to the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
"There has been some confusion about what transpired and I thought it should be cleared. What the five-member collegium sends to the central government is a recommendation that a judge of a High Court should be transferred to another High Court. The judge concerned is not at this stage under orders of transfer," Justice Muralidhar said on his farewell event at Delhi High Court here.
He said that the collegium's decision was communicated to him by the Chief Justice of India.
"I acknowledged the receipt of the letter. I was then asked to clarify what I meant. As I saw it, if I was going to be transferred from the Delhi High Court anyway, I was fine with moving to the Punjab and Haryana High Court," Justice Muralidhar said.
The Judge said that he sent a clarification that he did not object to the proposal.
"February 26, 2020, was perhaps the longest working day of my life as a Judge of this Court. It began at 12:30 am with a sitting at my residence with Justice Bhambani, under the orders of Justice Sistani, to deal with a PIL filed by Rahul Roy seeking safe passage for ambulances carrying the injured riot victims," Justice Muralidhar said.
"When I received a call at my residence from the lawyer for the petitioner, I first called Justice Sistani to ask what should be done, knowing that the Chief Justice was on leave. Justice Sistani explained that he too was officially on leave the whole of February 26 and that I should take up the matter," he added.
Justice Muralidhar said that later that day he, along with Justice Talwant Singh had taken up another fresh PIL on the CJ's Board seeking registration of FIRs for hate speeches.
"The (transfer) notification issued close to midnight of February 26 did two things. First, it transferred me to the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Second, it appointed me to a position from where I can never be transferred, or removed and in which I shall always be proud to remain. A former judge of arguably the best high court in the country, the High Court of Delhi," he said.
President of India, after consultation with the Chief Justice of India, had transfer Justice S Muralidhar, Judge of the Delhi High Court, as a Judge of the Punjab and Haryana High court and direct him to assume charge of his new office.
Opposition parties had targetted the BJP-led Central government over the "midnight transfer" alleging that government was "blatantly suppressing and undermining" not only the democratic institution but the judiciary as well. (ANI)