Justice Katju had in his Blog criticised the SC Bench’s Judgment in the Soumya Rape and Murder case, calling it a “grave error”.
It is perhaps for the first time in history that Supreme Court Bench on Monday treated a Facebook blog of a former Supreme Court judge, Justice Markandey Katju, into a review petition.
Apex Court asked him to personally appear in court to “debate” his critical views of the Bench’s verdict commuting death penalty in the sensitive 2011 Soumya rape and murder case.
A three-judge Full Bench of Justices Ranjan Gogoi, P.C. Pant and U.U. Lalit took a suo motu cognizance of Justice Katju’s blog wherein he had criticised the Supreme Court judges for relying on “hearsay evidence” to commute the death penalty of the sole convict in the case.
The SC Bench has summoned Justice Katju to appear in the court on November 11.
Justice Katju’s views were expressed in the Facebook blog – Satyam Bruyat.
The blog published on September 17 had castigated the Bench for believing “hearsay evidence” that Soumya jumped off the train instead of being pushed out by Govindaswamy.
Justice Katju had written in the blog that even a student of law in a law college knows this elementary principle that hearsay evidence is inadmissible,
The entire blog of Justice Katju was reproduced in the court order.
In the Judgment Justice Lalit had observed that as per record if she had died from the injuries sustained from the jump, Govindaswamy cannot be held guilty of murder.
SC had ruled it is convinced of the fact that accused had attacked her in the train, that he committed rape, for which life imprisonment was confirmed. But was not convinced that he committed murder.
SC said that convict cannot be held responsible for victim trying to jump and escape.
On the contrary Senior advocate Siddharth Luthra, who was appearing for Soumya’s mother,questioned whether a person who “forced” a the victim to jump out of a train is not equally liable.
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