Calcutta HC judge, Justice C S Karnan, appears to have stayed put in Chennai ,confirms lawyer

Calcutta HC judge Justice CS Karnan's lawyer requests CJI to stay arrest order
Justice Karnan approaches President Pranab Mukherjee for suspension of Supreme Court order.

CHENNAI/CUDDALORE,May12: After giving a slip to police teams from three states by spreading the news that he was travelling to Srikalahasti, the Calcutta HC judge, Justice C S Karnan, appears to have stayed put in Chennai and even held discussions with his lawyer on the next course of action.

When Justice Karnan left his room in the State Guest House at Chepauk on Wednesday morning, he told the staff and others around that he was proceeding to Srikalahasti to offer prayers. A high-level police team from West Bengal, which landed here a few hours later, rushed to the pilgrim town, about 120 km north of Chennai in Andhra Pradesh, looking for him. Police teams from AP and Tamil Nadu too joined in the search at Srikalahasti. The WB and TN teams returned to Chennai in the night, without the judge.

But lawyer Mathews J. Nedumpara said he had met Justice Karnan in Chennai Wednesday. “I was staying at a hotel on RK Salai. His son met me at about 11.30 pm and handed over all the papers and the vakalat to me to represent Karnan in the Supreme Court”, the lawyer told Deccan Chronicle. He declined to disclose where he had met the judge.

Mr Nedumpara presented Justice Karnan’s petition for ‘recall’ of the jail sentence before the Supreme Court on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the WB team went to the house of Sugan Karnan, son of Justice Karnan, at Choolaimedu to make enquiries. “The police team met Karnan’s wife Saraswathi and their son Sugan to find out where the judge was. They also searched the room at government guest house where Karnan was staying till Wednesday morning,” a senior police official said.

In Chennai, cyber police are working overtime to trace his location using his mobile phone signal since Wednesday afternoon as soon as the WB team headed by an officer in the rank of DGP sought help from city police commissioner Karan Singha. By the evening, the judge had switched off his two mobile phones.

“We are still on the job. We have taken out his call records and are trying to find out details of people with whom he was keeping in touch. We strongly believe he is very much in Tamil Nadu,” the police official said.

Judge’s native village protests against sentence
Mangalam, a sleepy village in this district, on Thursday erupted in protest against six months imprisonment to its ‘son of the soil’ Justice C. S. Karnan, judge of Calcutta High Court.

The villagers raised black flags atop their houses on Thursday as police teams from three states – West Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh – failed to locate him for the last two days. They also held a protest demonstration in the village demanding that the Supreme Court reconsider its decision of arrest order against Justice Karnan.

The high court judge was born and raised in this village and his family members still live here.

“My brother has not fled the country. He will never do that. He is sitting silently in Chennai and taking a call on his next course of action. He is a learned person and he will always respect the law of the land,” Arivudai Nambi, Justice Karnan’s brother, said.

He also alleged that his brother was being targeted since he exposed “corruption in higher judiciary.” Mr Nambi also said the villagers want the sentencing by the Supreme Court be withdrawn.