Supreme Court judges vs CJI: Four retired Justices back rebel judges in open letter to Dipak Misra

Four retired judges, including an ex-Supreme Court judge, wrote an open letter to the chief justice of India, saying they agree with the issues raised by the four apex court judges over the allocation of cases and the crisis needs to be resolved 'within the judiciary'

PTI January 14, 2018 17:55:53 IST
Supreme Court judges vs CJI: Four retired Justices back rebel judges in open letter to Dipak Misra

New Delhi: Four retired judges, including an ex-Supreme Court judge, on Sunday wrote an open letter to the chief justice of India, saying they agree with the issues raised by the four apex court judges over the allocation of cases and the crisis needs to be resolved "within the judiciary".

The letter by former apex court judge PB Sawant, ex-chief justice of Delhi High Court AP Shah, former Madras High Court judge K Chandru and ex-Bombay High Court judge H Suresh was given to the media. It also went viral on social media.

Supreme Court judges vs CJI Four retired Justices back rebel judges in open letter to Dipak Misra

File image of Dipak Misra. PTI

Justice Shah confirmed having written an open letter along with the other retired judges and told PTI, "We have written the open letter which the other judges named in the letter have also consented to."

He said that the view expressed by the retired judges is "quite similar to the views of the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) that till this crisis is resolved, the important matters should be listed before a five-judge Constitution bench of senior judges".

Justice Shah said that earlier he was not sure about the consent given by the other three judges and, therefore, he initially denied having written any letter but now all of them have given consent to it.

The letter quoted the judges as having said, "The four senior puisne Judges of the Supreme Court have brought to light a serious issue regarding the manner of allocation of cases, particularly sensitive cases, to various benches of the Supreme Court.

"They have expressed a grave concern that cases are not being allocated in a proper manner and are being allocated arbitrarily to particular designated benches, often headed by junior judges, in an arbitrary manner. This is having a very deleterious effect on the administration of justice and the rule of law."

The four retired judges said that they agree with the four judges of top court that though the CJI is the master of roster and can designate benches for allocation of work but this does not mean that it can be done in an "arbitrary manner" such that, "sensitive and important cases" are sent to "hand-picked benches" of junior judges by the chief justice.

"This issue needs to be resolved and clear rules and norms must be laid down for allocation of benches and distribution of cases, which are rational, fair and transparent," they said, adding that this must be done "immediately to restore public confidence" in the judiciary and in the Supreme Court.

The letter further said that "however till that is done, it is important that all sensitive and important cases including pending ones, be dealt with by a Constitution bench of the five seniormost judges of this Court".

It added, "Only such measures would assure the people that the Supreme Court is functioning in a fair and transparent manner and that the power of the Chief Justice as master of the roster is not being misused to achieve a particular result in important and sensitive cases. We, therefore, urge you to take immediate steps in this regard."

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

SC stays contempt proceedings against Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank over rent payment
India

SC stays contempt proceedings against Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank over rent payment

The Union minister had challenged the Uttarakhand High Court order that directed former chief ministers to pay rent at market rates for the entire period they occupied government accommodation since demitting office

‘Fat and happy’ with a conservative US Supreme Court, are Republicans losing a winning issue?
World

‘Fat and happy’ with a conservative US Supreme Court, are Republicans losing a winning issue?

Without the specter of a liberal court to motivate conservative voters anymore, they may find themselves without the issue that played a crucial role in Trump’s unexpected victory four years ago and has fortified his political base throughout a tumultuous first term

'Price of independent reportage': J&K leaders condemn sealing of Kashmir Times' office in Srinagar
India

'Price of independent reportage': J&K leaders condemn sealing of Kashmir Times' office in Srinagar

A group of journalists from the UT of Jammu and Kashmir also alleged that there are renewed attempts 'to throttle' Kashmir Times which has been 'at the forefront of fighting against govt curbs on communications and press freedom in Kashmir, especially post-5 August'