In an explosive revelation, former Supreme Court judge Kurian Joseph on Monday said ex-Chief Justice Dipak Misra was “remote-controlled by an external source” that impacted the administration of justice. However, Joseph refused to divulge on who the “external source” was and the cases where there was bias.
The former judge was quick to point out that things started changing for good during the remaining part of Justice Misra’s tenure as CJI after the historic press conference by four senior-most judges of the apex court, of which he too was a part.
“The then CJI was working under influence of some external source. He was remote-controlled by an external source. There was some influence of some external source that was impacting the administration of justice,” Justice Joseph told PTI. Joseph retired on November 29.
Joseph was among the four senior judges of the apex court who convened an unprecedented press conference on January 12 to flag their concerns on “selective” allocation of cases. The others were Justices J Chelameswar, who has since retired, Ranjan Gogoi, the current Chief Justice and Madan Lokur.
Joseph’s remark gave fresh fodder to the Congress to allege that the government was interfering in the highest levels of the judiciary. Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi demanded separate parliamentary and judicial inquiries into the matter.
Pressed again on whether the alleged influence was exerted by some political party or the government in any particular case, Joseph said the judges were only of the view that there was some bias by the judge concerned. A former CJI, who did not want to be named, said the statements made by Joseph does not incarcerate the entire institution.
Throwing more light on the press conference, Joseph said the four judges had earlier conveyed to Misra about the alleged influence of external sources on him. “Certainly, whatever the facts were with us at that time, we had conveyed it to the then CJI,” he said, adding that they had also flagged the issue of some cases being adjudicated with a perception of bias.
Joseph further revealed that the former CJI wasn’t taking decisions independently. “We are sure that the Chief Justice was not taking decisions on his own,” he said.