CJ Sinha likely to go abroad Oct 13, return Nov 10

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Desk report, October 11: The Supreme Court administration on Tuesday sent a letter to the President to inform that Chief Justice (CJ) SK Sinha, who is now on leave on health grounds, would go to Australia on October 13 to see his daughter and to receive treatment.

Registrar of the Appellate Division of the SC Md Zakir Hossain signed the letter saying that the Chief Justice may leave for Australia on October 13 or any nearest date and may stay there till November 10.

Secretary ASSM Zahirul Haque said that the letter from the chief justice to President Md Abdul Hamid reached the law ministry on Tuesday afternoon.

“The chief justice has sent the letter to us to inform the president that he is travelling abroad. It (forwarding the letter to the president) is under process now,” he said.

Justice Sinha’s sick leave following criticism by the ruling Awami League leaders over the 16th amendment appeals verdict has created many speculations and discussions in the political arena.

The BNP alleges that the government has in fact forced him to go on the one-month leave just three months before his retirement for delivering the verdict repealing parliament’s powers to sack judges.

The government denies the allegation, saying there is no connection between the verdict and the leave.

He also said the letter has been sent to the law ministry for forwarding it to the president through the prime minister’s office.

In response to a question, the official said that as per relevant rules SC administration informs the president about the chief justice’s leave and going abroad so that president assign another judge of the apex court to discharge the duties of the chief justice during his absence.

The Chief Justice himself can extend the tenure of the leave, he added.