Justice N Anand Venkatesh of the Madras High Court told the Tamil Nadu government that High Court judges should be treated at par with ministers and similar protocols must be followed for Judges.
Justice Venkatesh said this during the hearing on Friday after his vehicle was stopped at Adyar locality on Friday following a programme commemorating the 94th birth anniversary of film actor Sivaji Ganesan.
Justice Venkatesh was on his way to attend court when the incident took place. He remained stranded in his vehicle for around 25 minutes before he could reach the court quite late. Since Chief Minister MK Stalin, ministers and people from the film industry had assembled to pay tribute; police had barricaded the road near the Sivaji Ganesan Manimandapam and diverted the traffic.
As he reached the court, the Justice who was already annoyed ordered the Home Secretary SK Prabakar to appear before the court. SK Prabakar appeared before the court through video conferencing. While the Justice reprimanded the police he asked the home secretary whether the police would extend the same treatment to VIPs as he faced.
He said that HC judges should be treated at par with ministers adding that judges are entitled to certain protocols being followed.
He warned that the police halting his vehicle amounted to ‘contempt of court’ since it was an act of restraining him from discharging his duties. He said he was prevented despite his personal assistant informing the police authorities that the HC Justice is travelling in the car.
However, the court did not want to initiate contempt proceedings but asked the state home secretary to ensure that such incidents do not take place in future.
The Home Secretary regretted and said that he would discuss the matter with the Chennai City Police Commissioner and necessary precautions will be taken in the future.