While the incident of a Madras HC judge staying his own transfer culminated into a controversy with the judge alleging that he was targeted for being a Dalit, another outrageous incident involving the judiciary in Tamil Nadu has surfaced, where a Dalit court employee was served a memo by a judge, for not washing clothes at his house.
The judge of a lower court in Erode gave a memo to his office assistant, saying that the 47-year-old Dalit woman "failed to wash inner wear" and "retorted in an arrogant tone" to his wife when asked to do so, The New Indian Express reported.
The memo signed by sub judge D Selvam of Sathyamangalam court read,
“Please explain within 7 days why disciplinary action should not be initiated against you for your failure to wash the inner wear which were put for washing in the Sub-Judge’s house, and for throwing them away disgustingly, and when your attitude was questioned by the officer and his wife for retorting in an arrogant tone.”
To this the woman replied with an apology saying,
“My humble explanation for the memo dated February 1, 2016, I humbly submit that I will guard against any lapses in the future and undertake to do my duties properly. I request that the disciplinary action against me may please be closed.”
As the practice of treating a court staff like a domestic help shocked the region, the Tamil Nadu Judicial Association said that they will file a petition before the registrar general of Madras HC, and the judge told The Indian Express that he cannot react immediately since the memo was issued a month ago.
This is not the first incident since several cases of class IV employees being made to do house work by judges have come to light in the past. Earlier, the high court ruled in favour of a court employee who was suspended because he left to buy medicines without permission from the judge's wife.
While the woman named Vasanthy confirmed the incident, she refused to comment and is reportedly doing menial jobs at the judge's house with other court staff.
Feature image source: PTI