High-profile lawyers Anand, Khan declined relief by apex court

September 15th, 2008 - 8:52 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Sep 15 (IANS) The Supreme Court Monday refused to grant any relief to high profile lawyers R.K. Anand and I.U. Khan, who have been banned by the Delhi High Court from practising for four months for colluding as defence and prosecution to turn a prosecution witness hostile.A bench of Justice B.N. Agrawal and Justice G.S. Singhvi made clear to them that it would not hear any arguments against the high court order recommending stripping off their designation of senior advocate.

“There is nothing wrong in the direction. It was within the high court’s jurisdiction to give such direction,” said the court, referring to the high court’s recommendation.

The Delhi High Court bench of Justice Manmohan Sarin had banned Anand and Khan from appearing before it or any lower court in Delhi after finding them guilty of committing criminal contempt to the court for persuading witness Sunil Kulkarni to turn hostile in the BMW hit-and-run case involving former Navy chief Admiral S.M. Nanda’s grandson Sanjeev Nanda.

The bench had also made the recommendation to the full bench of the high court to strip Khan and Anand of the designation of senior advocate.

Besides, it had proposed that the full court consider designating advocate Arvind Nigam as senior advocate.

Anand and Khan has moved the apex court challenging the Delhi High Court ruling.

Endorsing the high court’s recommendations for divesting the two advocates of their designation, Justice Agrawal said: “If the court has given you this privilege, it is competent to take it away from you. The court passed this order after concluding that the allegations were too serious. There is no questioning of accepting any arguments against this direction.”

The bench, however, sought the high court records on the basis of which the ruling was delivered.

The bench adjourned the hearing to Sep 22.

The apex court bench summoned the high court records on the submissions of the former judge of the Delhi High Court, Justice R.S. Sodhi, who, appearing for Anand, opposed the high court ruling.

Opposing Justice Sarin’s judgement, Justice Sodhi said: “The high court has passed the order on the basis of one of its earlier ruling, which had already been stayed by the Supreme Court. The appeal in that case is pending before the apex court.”

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