Justice Md Abdul Wahhab Miah, now performing the functions of the chief justice, yesterday informed all the Supreme Court judges about the circumstances under which the court issued the statement about CJ Surendra Kumar Sinha two days ago.
The five judges of the Appellate Division of the SC, including Justice Wahhab Miah, expressed reluctance to sit in the same bench with Justice Sinha after the president handed them over documentary evidence on 11 specific allegations against the CJ and they did not get satisfactory answers from Justice Sinha, according to the statement.
Yesterday, Justice Wahhab Miah said the SC statement came as the chief justice had made a statement before leaving for Australia on Friday night, sources at the court said.
Justice Wahhab was addressing a full court meeting of the SC where all the judges of the Appellate and High Court divisions were present.
While leaving for the airport, Justice Sinha briefly spoke to reporters in front of his official residence at Kakrail and handed them a signed statement, typed in Bangla, saying that he was not sick.
He also said he was a “bit worried about the independence of the judiciary”. "Because citing the senior most judge [of the Supreme Court] who is now acting as the chief justice, the law minister yesterday [on Thursday] said that the judge acting as the chief justice will bring changes to the Supreme Court administration soon.
"There is no precedence of interference in the administration of the chief justice by the judge acting as the chief justice or the government. He [the judge acting as the CJ] will only discharge daily work as per the routine. It has always been like this.
"If any interference is made in the chief justice's administration, it can be easily assumed that the government is interfering in the higher court and this will further deteriorate the relationship between the judiciary and the government. It would not bring any good to the state," he added.
The following day, the SC issued the statement after a meeting of the five judges of the Appellate Division led by Justice Abdul Wahhab Miah.
In the statement, the SC said it was issued as Justice Sinha's statement was “misleading” and had drawn the court's attention.
According to the SC statement, on September 30, the president invited the five judges, other than Justice Sinha, to the Bangabhaban.
The four other judges are Justice Md Abdul Wahhab Miah, Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain, Justice Hasan Foez Siddique and Justice Mirza Hussain Haider.
At one stage of a long discussion, the president handed them over documentary evidence over 11 specific allegations against the chief justice.
The allegations include “money laundering, financial irregularities, corruption, moral turpitude and some other specific serious allegations”, added the statement.