It is now more than two months since former Calcutta High Court judge C.S. Karnan was arrested and lodged in Kolkata’s Presidency Jail. The controversial former judge, who reportedly threatened police officers with legal action when they came to arrest him in Coimbatore in June, appears to have mellowed with time. Justice Karnan was awarded a six-month prison sentence by the Supreme Court for contempt of court in May 2017.Overcoming the initial despondency of his first few days in jail, Justice Karnan is now mostly in a jovial mood, sources said. “He is treated with respect by the jail officials and inmates alike, and is on cordial terms with them,” Justice Karnan’s lawyer Mathews J. Nedumpara told The Hindu. Time passes rather more leisurely in jail, unlike the days he spent at his Kolkata residence mostly occupied with the contempt motion initiated against him by the Supreme Court, and in briefing the press on it. With ample time on his hands, he has “gone back to his days as a law student.” Lawyer’s robe“Now Justice Karnan spends his days mostly reading judgements and books on law, in his preparation to work as a lawyer after his release,” said Mr. Nedumpara.Justice Karnan has also developed a taste for Bengali food in jail, especially rice and fish curry, which has made matters easier for him since they are common to both south Indian and Bengali food.
The Goa Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Sunday said bilateral talks over sharing drinking water from the Mahadayi river with Karnataka will be held only after the Karnataka elections.The party had faced criticism from environmental activists, civil society members and Opposition parties after Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar wrote to Karnataka BJP chief B.S. Yeddyurappa to discuss the release of water from Mahadayi.Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a function in North Goa on Sunday, Goa BJP president and Rajya Sabha MP Vinay Tendulkar said the party was fully with Mr. Parrikar’s stand, but added, “The CM has already indicated that this will happen only after the Karnataka elections. Therefore, the question does not arise of using the issue for elections.”Flak from all partiesAfter Mahadayi Bachav Abhiyan (MBA), an organisation working against the diversion of water to Karnataka, the Opposition as well as allies of the government have joined those criticising Mr. Parrikar for his willingness to discuss the issue with Karnataka.On Sunday, All India Congress Committee secretary Girish Chodankar said Mr. Parrikar must first provide regular drinking water to his constituents in Panaji before providing drinking water to others.Anand Shirdokar, president of the Goa Suraksha Manch, attacked Mr. Parrikar for offering to hold talks when the matter is in a tribunal, and Goa has till now said it will only go by the verdict of the tribunal.“It is clear that Mr. Parrikar has been pressurised by his party boss Amit Shah,” said Mr. Shirodkar.Government ally Goa Forward Party has also expressed reservations over the CM’s letter, and alliance partner Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, which had a central committee meeting on Sunday, has strongly opposed the move too. “The government must maintain status quo on the issue till the tribunal verdict is out,” MGP president and former Minister Deepak Dhavlikar told reporters after the meeting.Impact on caseMBA secretary and a member of the National Wildlife Board Rajendra Kerkar told The Hindu that the organisation fears that Mr. Parrikar’s sudden “surrender” could weaken Goa’s strong case in the Mahadayi Water Dispute Tribunal.
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