A new crèche comes up in Supreme Court

03 May, 2018, 15:54 | Author: Nina Hammond
  • The big news SC collegium to decide on KM Joseph’s elevation today and nine other top stories

Justice Chelameswar did not hold court but was present in the Collegium meeting.

Sources, however, told this newspaper that wide range of issues relating to appointment of judges from High Courts, which did not have representation, was discussed which remained inconclusive.

The Centre's rejection of Justice KM Joseph's name triggered a huge outcry with several legal luminaries alleging that this was a payback by the Centre for the judgement by Justice Joseph, striking down Presidential Rule in the State of Uttarakhand High Court. "The government has exercised that power only", he said.

Justice Joseph's name was recommended along with then senior advocate Indu Malhotra on 10 January for their elevation as apex court judges.

Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Wednesday reiterated that the government isn't turning down the Uttarakhand Chief Justice K M Joseph elevation to the Supreme Court because of his 2016 Uttarakhand order.

"I wish to deny with all authority at my command".

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Three of the others said they needed time to respond to other names proposed by the CJI and also to decide if a consolidated list of the four names should be sent to the government or just the name of Justice Joseph. Firstly, a proper (BJP-led) government with almost three-fourth majority has been elected in Uttarakhand. "Secondly, that order was confirmed by Justice (J.S.) Khehar of the Supreme Court", the minister said in response to a media query.

The letter pointed out that justice Joseph is 42nd in seniority among the high court judges and many HCs such as Gujarat, Calcutta and Jammu and Kashmir are not represented in the apex court.

It was indicated that while Justices Misra, Gogoi and Lokur were of the opinion that the Centre's suggestions needed to be considered further at the next meeting, the other two judges were determined that the name must be iterated.

After more than three months, the Centre cleared the file of Indu Malhotra and notified her appointment to the Supreme Court on April 26.

The top court collegium recommending the elevation of Justice Joseph had said: "The collegium considers that at present Justice K.M. Joseph, who hails from Kerala High Court and is now functioning as Chief Justice of Uttarakhand High Court, is more deserving and suitable in all respects than other Chief Justices and senior puisne Judges of High Courts for being appointed as Judges of the Supreme Court of India".

Many former chief justices, including RM Lodha and TS Thakur, have openly said that the decision of the Centre was wrong and that the collegium should reiterate its decision to elevate Joseph in the interest of the independence of judiciary.

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