Supreme Court crisis: 4 retired judges write open letter to CJI Dipak Misra

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".

By: PTI | New Delhi | Updated: January 14, 2018 7:38 pm
Supreme Court crisis: 4 retired judges write open letter to CJI Dipak Misra The Supreme Court. (Express Photo by Tashi Tobgyal)

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 allocation of cases and the crisis needs to be resolved “within the judiciary”.

The letter by former apex court judge P B Sawant, ex-chief justice of Delhi High Court A P 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.

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 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.”

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  1. S
    somnath devidas deshmane
    Jan 17, 2018 at 11:39 am
    शक तो होगा ना मिलाॅर्ड? ४५ वर्षांपूर्वी आम्ही विद्यार्थीवसतिगृहात राहात होतो. शहरापासून दूर, राष्ट्रीय महामार्गाच्या एका अंगाला आमचं वसतिगृह होतं आणि दुसर्‍या बाजूला न्यायाधीश निवास होते. न्यायाधीशांच्या बंगल्यासमोरुन जाताना आम्हा माकडांचा आवाज आपोआपच खाली यायचा. तालुका स्तरावरील न्यायमूर्तींच्या बंगल्याचा नैतिक दराराच तेवढा मोठा होता, त्याकाळी! वसतिगृहातील आमच्या चार वर्षांच्या वास्तव्यात कुणी पांढरा डगलेवाला, कुणी लाल सलामवाला न्यायाधीश निवासाच्या आसपास फिरकलेला आम्हाला कधी दिसला नाही! न्यायाधीश महाराज दररोज सकाळी, संध्याकाळी महामार्गावर फिरायला निघायचे. धीरगंभीर चेहरा! कुणाला हाय, हॅलो नाही की कुणाला सलाम नाही! नाकासमोर चालत राहायचे! त्यांचा एक आॅर्डरली त्यांच्या मागे दहा-बारा फुटांवरुन चालत असायचा. तोही कधी कुणाशी बोलत असल्याचे आम्ही बघितले नाही! न्यायाधीशांची आदरयुक्त प्रतिमा आमच्या मनावर त्या वेळी कायमची कोरली गेली होती, ती आजही कायम आहे. थोरामोठ्यांनी आपल्या नि:शब्द आदर्श वर्तणुकीतून केलेले संस्कार इतरांच्या मन:पटलावरुन सा पुसले जात नाहीत! म्हणून तर सर्वोच्च न्यायालयातील चार
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    1. Mehar Bhai
      Jan 14, 2018 at 8:12 pm
      Congrats.Good Wishes.#SCJudgesMutiny SUPREME JUSTICE V/S JUDGES:Justice means Godly Gift within.Judges being worshiped as gods but now becoming devils-RAVANS.No justice if MISCONDUCT on the part of judges start acting like trade union leaders political parties agents TEGRITY IS EVERYTHING Be Angels. #PresidentKovind UNETHICAL UNBECOMING IF JUDGES ACT LIKE UNION LEADERS POLITICAL PARTIES AGENTS-Now DIRT POLITICS STIGMA KNOCKED JUDICIARY Kaliyugi gods SINS. Congrats. Good Wishes.Wonderful Excellent.Om Shanti. WORLD BIGGEST DEMOCRACY IN DANGER-JUDICIARY REVOLT:Nothing New.All KALIYUGI DRAMA BY Kaliyugi Kings.RELAX.All sailing in the same sinking ship full of corruption,nepotism,favoritism,abuse of power,discretion,manmarjiraj,caged parrots..Nothing moves without 'PRADHAN BABU'.People have lost absolute faith from corrupt and greedy netas, babus, law makers,judiciary -now nothing left.President 's Rule/Emergency urgent call of time to be taken over by the commander -in-chief JUSTICE
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