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Grounds for my removal untenable: Justice Ganguly in resignation letter

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Grounds for my removal untenable: Justice Ganguly in resignation letter
Grounds for my removal untenable: Justice Ganguly in resignation letter "Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly spoke to me over telephone and said that he is thinking of resigning (as WBHRC chief)," former Attorney General Soli Sorabjee told PTI on being asked about reports that the judge has written to him on the issue. During the telephonic conversation, Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly said so many things are being said about him and wanted his view. Sorabjee said he had told Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly that it will be a "wise decision" to resign. Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly's talk with Sorabjee came close on the heels of the Union Cabinet on Thursday approving a proposal for sending a Presidential reference to the Supreme Court on the issue, which was seen as a step towards his removal as WBHRC chairman. A three-judge Supreme Court panel had indicted Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly by holding that the statement of the intern, both written and oral, had prima facie disclosed "an act of unwelcome behaviour (unwelcome verbal/non-verbal conduct of sexual nature)" by the judge with her in the Le Meridien hotel room on December 24 last year. Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly has denied the allegations of the law intern and blamed "powerful interests" of trying to tarnish his image due to certain judgments delivered by him. In a letter of Chief Justice of India P Sathasivam last month, Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly said he had never harassed the law intern nor made any unwelcome advances towards her or any other female intern. When contacted in Kolkata earlier in the day, Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly was non-committal. "Lets see," was his answer when asked by PTI about his future course of action in the case. The former Supreme Court judge Asok Kumar Ganguly refused to elaborate anything further.

The resignation of Justice A.K. Ganguly as chairman of the West Bengal Human Rights Commission in the wake of allegations of sexual misconduct with a law intern has been accepted.

West Bengal Governor M.K. Narayanan, whom the former Supreme Court judge met and handed over his resignation yesterday, has accepted it, highly-placed sources said on Tuesday.

“The Governor has accepted the resignation and has informed the state government about it,” the sources told PTI.

After his meeting with the Governor at Raj Bhavan on Monday, 66-year-old Ganguly had refused to make any comments.

However, highly placed sources had said Justice Ganguly handed over his resignation, four days after the Union Cabinet met and decided to make a Presidential reference to the Supreme Court for his removal from the post as mandated under the Human Rights Commission Act.

Ever since the scandal broke in November, the former apex court judge had refused to step down even after a three-judge committee of the Supreme Court had indicted him.

The panel had held that the statement of the intern, both written and oral, had prima facie disclosed “an act of unwelcome behaviour (unwelcome verbal/non-verbal conduct of sexual nature)” by the judge with her in the Le Meridien hotel room in Delhi on December 24, 2012.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had written twice to President Pranab Mukherjee seeking urgent action against the retired judge.

The Union Cabinet among other things had taken into account the Chief Minister’s communication to the President.

Justice Ganguly has denied the allegations of the law intern and blamed “powerful interests” of trying to tarnish his image due to certain judgements delivered by him. Justice Ganguly did not attend office on Tuesday.

Justice Ganguly called up his office in the morning and told the staff that he would not be coming today, according to WBHRC sources.

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