The Supreme Court Collegium has recommended elevation of Karnataka High Court Chief Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Delhi High Court judge Justice Sanjiv Khanna to the apex court.
The recommendation was made by the Collegium, comprising the five seniormost judges, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and Justices A K Sikri, S A Bobde, N V Ramana and Arun Mishra, which met here Thursday.
The apex court, which has a sanctioned strength of 31 judges, is now working with 26.
The Collegium had met on December 12, 2018 “to consider and recommend names for appointment as Judges in the Supreme Court”.
Justice Madan B Lokur, then a member of the Collegium, has since retired and Justice Mishra became the new member.
The resolution adopted by the Collegium on Thursday said that although the December 12 meeting “took certain decisions,” but “the required consultation could not be undertaken and completed as the winter vacation of the Court intervened”.
“By the time the Court re-opened, the composition of the Collegium underwent a change. After extensive deliberations on 5th / 6th January, 2019, the newly constituted Collegium deemed it appropriate to have a fresh look at the matter and also to consider the proposals in the light of the additional material that became available,” it said.
The resolution said, “Collegium has discussed names of Chief Justices as well as senior puisne Judges of all High Courts, eligible for elevation to the Supreme Court” and “is of the considered view that at present”, Justices Maheshwari and Khanna “are 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”.
Justice Maheshwari was appointed a judge of Rajasthan High Court on September 2, 2004 and transferred to Allahabad High Court in 2014. He was elevated as Chief Justice of Meghalaya High Court in 2016 and thereafter transferred to Karnataka High Court. He stands at serial number 21 in the combined seniority of High Court Judges on all-India basis. Justice Khanna was appointed judge of Delhi High Court on June 24, 2005 and stands at serial number 33 in the combined seniority list.
In other decisions, the Collegium recommended that Chief Justice T B Radhakrishnan of the Telangana High Court be transferred to Calcutta High Court.