Judicial Integrity Upheld: Supreme Court Ruling on Disciplinary Action

In a significant ruling by the Supreme Court of India, the importance of judicial integrity was emphasized in a disciplinary action case. The judgment sheds light on upholding high standards of behavior within the judiciary, ensuring unbiased and impartial decision-making. Stay informed about the latest developments in legal ethics and the standards expected from judicial officers.


  • Appellant challenged writ petition filed before High Court which was dismissed.
  • Appellant was appointed as a Judicial Magistrate on 01.03.1985.
  • Notice issued in special leave petition on 14.12.2015 limited to the question of quantum of punishment.
  • Appellant was put under suspension on 08.02.2001 and dismissed from service on 15.01.2004.

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  • The issue at hand is whether the punishment imposed on the individual is justified or if a lenient view can be taken.
  • The decision hinges on evaluating the severity of the punishment in relation to the individual’s actions or circumstances.
  • This issue does not involve any other factors besides the appropriateness of the punishment.

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  • Findings of fact have been upheld by all courts, with the Court not interfering except on the quantum of punishment.
  • Integrity is the foremost quality required in a Judge.
  • Relevant provisions of Maharashtra Civil Services (Discipline and Appeal) Rules, 1979, Rule 5 were discussed.
  • Major penalties such as compulsory retirement, removal from service, and dismissal from service were highlighted.
  • Emphasis on the first proviso in cases of accepting gratification as a motive for official acts leading to removal or dismissal.
  • The core allegation against the appellant involved passing judicial orders in favor of a lady lawyer due to their relationship.

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  • Judges must deliver justice impartially and uninfluenced by any consideration.
  • Judges are judged by the quality of judgments and the purity of their character.
  • Judges hold high public office and must maintain high standards of behavior both inside and outside the Court.
  • Judicial officers cannot have two standards of behavior, one in court and another outside of court.
  • Judges are expected to uphold a high standard of conduct due to holding a public office of trust.
  • Integrity is the hallmark of judicial discipline and Judges must be incorruptible.
  • The judiciary is an institution based on honesty and integrity, and Judges represent the State in their functions.
  • Judges must display impeccable integrity and unimpeachable independence in their roles.
  • Judges must serve the public and maintain high standards even if societal standards have fallen.
  • A Judge must be above suspicion and always remember they are there to serve the public.
  • The officer’s decision in the cases was influenced by his proximate relationship with a lady lawyer, rather than being based on the facts on record and applicable law
  • This kind of decision-making is considered gratification of a different form, not limited to monetary gratification
  • Judges are expected to decide cases solely based on facts and law, without any extraneous influences
  • The failure of the Judicial Officer to uphold integrity, behavior, and probity standards is evident
  • Gratification can take various forms like money, power, or lust, not restricted to monetary gains
  • Integrity is highlighted as a key quality that judicial officers should possess
  • The appeal is dismissed with no merit found.
  • No leniency can be shown due to the conduct of the individual.
  • A lesser punishment cannot be imposed based on the individual’s conduct.


Case Number: C.A. No.-007306-007306 / 2019

Click here to read/download original judgement

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