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Women protest outside SC over clean chit to CJI

New Delhi: Several women including lawyers, activists and members of NGOs on Tuesday protested outside the Supreme Court after an in-house panel of the court cleared Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi of sexual harassment charges.

The women were detained by the police and taken to the Mandir Marg Police station.

Soon after, prohibitory orders banning the assembly of four or more people were imposed outside the Supreme Court in the heart of Delhi.

The women held placards as they protested against the clean chit given to the Chief Justice by the in-house committee of his colleagues.

"Do Constitutional rights to protest not apply to the Supreme Court?" tweeted noted lawyer Prashant Bhushan.

CPI-M leader Brinda Karat said: "The procedure seems to be totally unjust. Why can't the victim be given the report? It's wrong. When they are dismissing the matter, more questions are being raised about the procedures adopted by the Supreme Court. It's an injustice."

The protest comes after a three-judge top court panel headed by Justice S.A. Bobde found no substance on Monday in the sexual harassment allegations levelled by a former apex court employee against Chief Justice Gogoi.

On Tuesday, the woman asked the in-house probe committee for a copy of the report giving a clean chit to the CJI.

"I have a right to know how, why and on what basis have your Lordships found my complaint to have 'no substance'," she said, adding she was "deeply shocked" on the outcome of the committee's findings.

"Despite my detailed affidavit, ample corroborative evidence and clear, consistent statement reiterating my experience of sexual harassment and consequent victimization, the Committee has found no substance in my complaint and affidavit," she said.

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