The complainant, who accused Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi of sexual harassment, on Tuesday asked the apex court’s in-house probe committee for a copy of the report giving a clean chit to the CJI on all charges.
“I have a right to know how, why and on what basis have Your Lordships found my complaint to have ‘no substance’,” the complainant said, adding she was “deeply shocked” on the outcome of the committee’s findings.
“Despite my detailed affidavit, ample corroborative evidence, and clear and consistent statement reiterating my experience of sexual harassment and consequent victimisation, the committee has found no substance in my complaint and affidavit,” she said.
The letter addressed to the in-house committee comprising Justices SA Bobde, Indira Banerjee and Indu Malhotra, could be construed as complainant’s official demand for a copy report of the committee.
She claims that if a copy of the report is handed over to the CJI, then it is her right to have the report to learn about the reason behind the rejection of her complaint, and “depositions of any witnesses, any other persons or any other evidence considered by the committee”.
She termed the decision of not handing over the report to her “strange”.
The probe panel had said that the procedure was not liable to be made public.
“From the beginning, I have been treated as an outsider, I have not been informed of the procedure, I have not been informed of my basic rights and obligations with regard to the inquiry proceedings,” said the woman’s statement.
The decision to give clear the CJI has come under fire as several women lawyers and activists on Tuesday protested outside the Supreme Court questioning the procedure adopted to clear the CJI in the case.
The Delhi Police detained the protesters and imposed CrPC Section 144 in the area to prevent further escalation.
The protest came a day after the Supreme Court-appointed three-judge in-house committee on Monday said it found no substance in the sexual harassment allegations against the CJI.
Following the verdict, the woman complainant in a statement said she is highly disappointed and that she felt gross injustice has been done to her.
The woman had pulled out of the probe on April 30 after participating for three days.
She had refused to appear before the panel saying she felt she is “not likely to get justice”.
A three-judge bench headed by CJI on April 20 had held an unprecedented hearing in the wake of allegations made against Justice Gogoi.
Chief Justice Gogoi was accused of sexual assault by a former officer who worked as a junior assistant at the Supreme Court between May 2014 and December 2018.
(With agency inputs)