With differences over the methodology of finalizing four names in the Supreme Court collegium—three high court judges and a senior advocate—for promotion to the apex court and the Centre, Chief Justice of India U U Lalit has been asked to name his successor. As of now, the Collegium has decided to “close” the further steps in respect of the “incomplete” upgradation step.
A statement dated October 9, inked by five members of the Collegium — CJI Lalit and judges DY Chandrachud, SK Kaul, S Abdul Nazeer, and KM Joseph — detailed what had happened far. The Collegium, in a statement, said the stir was met with a disagreement between the two judges.
“The resolution initiated by the CJI includedHon’ble Shri Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and hon’ble Shri Justice KM Joseph.Hon’bleDr. JusticeD.Y. Chandrachud and hon’ble Shri JusticeS. Abdul Nazeer for selection and appointment of judges by rotation. The procedure expostulated. Thus, the matter was immaculately suited for discussion at the table among the judges forming the Collegium,” the statement said.
“Under these circumstances, there’s no need to go farther, and the untreated business is closed without any deliberation in the meeting convened on September 30, 2022. The meeting of September 30, 2022, has been set away,” the statement said.
On October 8, the central government began appointing the coming CJI, writing to CJI Lalit to name his successor. Traditionally, once the CJI names his successor, the Collegium he heads doesn’t make any new recommendations.
“Meanwhile, a letter from the hon’ble Union Law Minister dated October 7, 2022, requesting the CJI to nominate his successor to hold the post of CJI on November 9, 2022,” the statement said.
CJI Lalit is retiring on November 8.
The Supreme Court met again on Monday after a week-long Dussehra vacation, and September 30 would have been the last occasion to hold a Collegium meeting to make recommendations.
Still, the meeting of Justice Chandrachud couldn’t take place after the end of the court at9.10 pm.
“The suspended meeting of the Collegium was convened on September 30, 2022, at4.30 pm, the morning of the reflections held on September 26, 2022″, the statement said.
Although Justice Chandrachud, one of the members, didn’t attend the meeting, the CJI transferred the” stir through rotation letter dated30-09-2022,” and it” entered the blessing” of judges Kaul and Joseph. Affiliated letters dated01-10-2022 and07-10-2022″ but by” separate letters dated01-10-2022″.
Judges Chandrachud and Nazeer”inter-alia expostulated to the methodology espoused in the letter dated30.09.2022″. It further said the letters of judges Chandrachud and Nazeer” though not bared any views against any of these campaigners”.
” This was brought to the notice of his lordship, and reasons were requested, and indispensable suggestions were invited vide alternate communication dated02-10-2022 addressed by the CJI,” but” there was no reply to the said communication,” it said.
According to the statement,” therefore, the stir initiated by the CJI had the concurrence of judges Kaul and Joseph”. Judges Chandrachud and Nazeer had” expostulated to the process of selection and appointment of judges by vogue”, saying that” the matter was, thus, immaculately suited for discussion at the table among the judges forming the collegium”.
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