Mangalore, Oct 6, 2014: A special report by local media, as yet unconfirmed, states that the Mangalore North police have registered three first information reports (FIRs) against retired High Court judge Justice Michael F Saldanha and others, following direction from the courts.
The action it is stated is in the wake of the direction of two courts before which advocate M P Noronha had filed private complaints. The advocate has filed aprivate complaint in the court of Second Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate of Mangalore and two complaints before the third JMFC, Mangalore.
The former judge has been booked under IPC Sections 384 (Extortion), 385 (Putting person in fear of injury in order to commit extortion), 500 (defamation), 501 (printing matter known to be defamatory) and 506 (criminal intimidation) and Section 66(A) (sending offensive message) of Information Technology Act.
Advocate Noronha, in his complaints, has alleged that his reputation has been tarnished by the false and defamatory letters written by Justice M F Saldanha to various public authorities. He has also stated that a Kannada eveninger and a website had published baseless and false reports on him.
“They had even published that Noronha’s anticipatory bail was rejected by the High Court in a case pertaining to St Aloysius Institutions, though he had not filed any such bail petition,” the complaint states. According to the complaint, Justice Saldanha had a grudge against Noronha as the latter had successfully argued a case for the Jesuit priests of St Aloysius College.
Justice Saldanha had sought an injunction order, which the court refused. The complaint states that in order to prevent Noronha from proceeding with the case, Justice Saldanha made false allegations against the advocate, which subsequently appeared in the local media.
A Recap : Four persons - Kiran, Shivaram, Kishan and Yamunappa -were arrested on June 26, 2014 following an FIR registered by the Mangalore North police stating that they were “involved” in demolition of a property on the premises of St Aloysius Institutions. The names of three priests figured in the list of 40 accused persons. Going by the priests’ account, the police, it is understood, were under “tremendous pressure” to make arrests in the case.
Left with no option, the police are said to have arrested “somebody” and booked them for rioting, dacoity, outraging modesty of woman among other charges. However, the CID, which conducted a parallel inquiry, dropped several charges against the arrested persons, for which they (arrested) were booked by the local police.
Bail to accused : The second JMFC court granted bail to all the four ruling that the offence under Section 427 IPC (causing damage) was a bailable offence and the accused were in judicial custody for more than 90 days. Further facts on this are awaited.