Justice CS Karnan on the run after arrest order

Calcutta High Court judge CS Karnan is on the run after the Supreme Court ordered his arrest over charges of contempt of court, with some speculative reports even saying that the judge could have sneaked out of the country into neighbouring Nepal or Bangladesh to avoid arrest.

Justice Karnan was at the state guest house in Chennai when the seven-judge bench of the Supreme Court sentenced him to jail for six months for contempt of court.

But, he left the guesthouse early on Wednesday morning saying he was going to Srikalahasti, a pilgrim centre in Andhra Pradesh, 120 kilometres from Chennai.

Shortly afterwards a high-level police team from West Bengal flew into the city to arrest him and take him back to Kolkata as directed by the Supreme Court.

The SC had directed that Justice Karnan be jailed in the Calcutta high court jurisdiction area.

Police teams from Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh have launched a manhunt to trace him.

Reports quoting sources close to the judge said he is currently at an undisclosed location within India and is trying to petition the court for an interim bail.

"He is not evading arrest but only buying time to file petition for interim bail," India Today quoted one of his close associates as saying.

According to latest reports, Karnan has approached the Supreme Court seeking recall of arrest order issued against him.

Sources say Karnan's team is preparing a review application and they are waiting for the full copy of the Supreme Court order for his arrest as they have received only the operative part so far.

Some reports, meanwhile, said the 61-year-old judge is also seeking an appointment with President Pranab Mukherjee to present his case.

Meanwhile, Justice Karnan is reported to have sought help from the Tamil Nadu government and his team has been in touch with the state government.

In fact, reports said, there were some protests at Karnan's native village over his arrest order and that the state police will go slow on the matter fearing law and order problems.