Supreme Court Panel Not To Give Position to Bombay HC Judge Over POCSO Rulings
Controversial Pocso rulings cost Bombay high court judge Pushpa Ganediwala her confirmation
The Supreme Court Collegium has withdrawn its recommendation to confirm the permanent status of a Bombay High Court judge. It is for passing two controversial orders on sexual assault. Justice Pushpa Ganediwala is an additional judge at the Bombay High Court. She has been in the news recently after details of her judgments in POCSO rulings became public.
Justice Ganediwala in a ruling on January 19 had acquitted a 39-year-old man under POCSO of molesting a 12-year-old girl. She ruled out that groping without removing clothes and without ‘skin to skin’ or direct physical contact was not an offence under the Act. In another judgment that she gave on January 15, she said that holding a minor girl’s hand and opening pants’ zip does not fall under the purview of ‘sexual assault’ or ‘aggravated sexual assault’ under the POCSO Act.
No sooner did the ruling became public Ganediwala was severely criticised. Based on the criticism, the collegium withdrew its resolution approving her appointment as a permanent judge in the Bombay High Court.
The Supreme Court judges are also reportedly of the opinion that Justice Ganediwala needs to be sensitised about the aim and objectives of the POCSO Act.
As reported by sources to NDTV, “There is nothing personal against her. She needs exposure and may not have dealt with these types of cases when she was a lawyer…She needs exposure and training.”
The Supreme Court Collegium is rarely known to recall or withdraw the recommendations it makes to the government.