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'I was and I am member of RSS,' says Calcutta HC judge Chitta Ranjan Dash in his farewell speech

Justice Dash said that he had distanced himself from the organisation for about 37 years because of the work he undertook.

Edited By: Arushi Jaiswal @JaiswalArushi Kolkata Published on: May 21, 2024 8:41 IST
Calcutta High Court, Justice Chitta Ranjan Dash
Image Source : SCREENGRAB/YOUTUBE Calcutta High Court judge Justice Chitta Ranjan Dash

Kolkata: Calcutta High Court judge Justice Chitta Ranjan Dash, who retired on Monday, said that he was and is a member of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Dash said that he had been associated with the RSS since his childhood.

Justice Dash gave the credit for shaping his personality to the RSS.  According to him, the lessons of RSS made him courageous and upright, while teaching him the value of having an equal view of others.

'Ready to go back to organisation'

Addressing his farewell gathering at the high court, Justice Dash expressed his willingness to go back to the organisation if they called him for any assistance or for any work that he was capable of doing, in the presence of the judges and members of the bar.

"To the distaste of some persons, I must admit here that I was and I am a member of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)," he said.

Demitting office after over 14 years as a high court judge, Justice Dash came to the Calcutta HC from the Orissa HC on transfer.

"I owe a lot to the organisation. I am there from my childhood and throughout my youth. I have learnt to be courageous, upright and have an equal view for others and above all, the sense of patriotism and commitment to the work," he said.

Justice Dash mentioned that he had been separated from the organization for approximately 37 years due to his commitments elsewhere. "I have never used my membership of the organisation for any advancement of my career because it is against its principles," he said.

Justice Dash said he treated everybody at par, be he a rich or poor person, be he a communist, or from the BJP, Congress or TMC (Trinamool Congress). "All are equal before me, I do not hold any bias for anyone or for any particular political philosophy or mechanism," he said, adding that he tried to dispense justice on the principles of empathy and that "law can be bent to do justice, but justice cannot be bent to suit the law".

"Because I have not done anything wrong in my life, I have the courage to say I belong to the organisation, because that is also not wrong," he said, adding that if he was a good person, he could not belong to a bad organisation.

Who is Justice Chitta Ranjan Dash?

Born in 1962 in Sonepur, Odisha, Dash received his early education in Ullunda and pursued higher studies in Dhenkanal and Bhubaneswar. He obtained his law degree in graduated from Cuttack in 1985.

Dash began his legal career by enrolling as an advocate in 1986. He served as an additional standing counsel for the state government from 1992 to 1994, as per the Calcutta HC's website.

In February 1999, Dash entered the Orissa Superior Judicial Service (Senior Branch) as a direct recruit. His judicial career progressed, and he was appointed as an additional judge of the Orissa HC in October 2009.

Later, Dash assumed the role of a judge at the Calcutta HC on transfer on June 20, 2022.

During his tenure, Justice Dash faced controversy for being part of a bench that issued a judgment outlining certain codes of conduct for adolescent girls to 'control their sexual urges.'

(With PTI inputs)

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