V. Ramaswami was the Justice of
the Supreme Court of
India and the first supreme court judge against whom
impeachment proceedings were ever initiated in independent India.
Early life and education
Ramaswami was born on 15 February 1929. He spent his school
years in Hindu High School in Srivilliputhur. He was educated in The American College in
Madurai and received a degree in Law from Madras Law College.
his career by practising both civil and criminal law at the
He was appointed permanent Judge of the
Madras High Court from January 31, 1971. He was later
transferred and appointed Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court
on November 12, 1987.
At the height of his career, he was
appointed Judge of the Supreme Court on 6 October 1989 from which
he retired on 14 February 1994.
surfaced in the middle of year 1990 when several media outlets
reported about his ostentatious expenditure on his official
residence during his tenure as a Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana.
serious turn of events, on 1 February 1991, Supreme Court Bar
Association passed a resolution calling for his impeachment and
requesting Chief justice not assign him any further legal work.
Bharatiya Janata Party
Left parties submitted a notice of motion to the Indian Parliament
seeking his removal from office.
Accepting the motion on 12 March 1991, Speaker Rabi Ray
constituted a committee comprising of
Justice P B Sawant of the Supreme Court, Chief Justice P D Desai of
the Bombay High Court and Justice O Chinnappa Reddy, retired judge
of the Supreme Court to investigate the affair. The committee found
Ramaswami guilty of 11 out of 14 charges.
The impeachment motion was placed in the assembly for debate and
voting on 10 May 1993. Of 401 members present in the assemby that
day, there were 196 votes for impeachment and no votes against and
205 abstentions by ruling Congress
and its allies. The motion
which required not less than two third majority of the total number
of members present in both houses of the Congress and an absolute
majority of its total membership thus failed to pass.
1999 Lok Sabha election
contested from Sivakasi constituency
as an Anna Dravida
Munnetra Kazhagam (ADMK) candidate in 1999 election against
Vaiko from Marumalarchi Dravida
Thamaraikani from ADMK who was
expelled from the party contested as an independent. He lost the
election to Vaiko by securing 32.21% of the votes. Vaiko received
41.8% and Thamaraikani
4.74% of the