Four senior judges of the country's apex court - Justice Chelameswar, Justice Gogoi, Justice Kurien, and Justice Lokur - called for a press meet and declared that the administration of the Supreme Court was not in order, and released an undated letter that they wrote to the Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra. "The four of us are convinced that unless this institution is preserved and it maintains its equanimity, democracy will not survive in this country".
"We tried to collectively persuade the chief justice of India that certain things are not right and remedial measures need to be taken, but unfortunately we failed". "The non-finalisation of the Memorandum of Procedure has left almost 40 per cent of the sanctioned posts of the judges vacant, leading to delay in justice delivery", the statement said.
Once the issue arising from the order dated 27th October, 2017 in R.P. Luthra vs. Union of India, mentioned above, is adequately addressed by you and if it becomes so necessary, we will apprise you specifically of the other judicial orders passed by this court which would require to be similarly dealt with.
# "It is certainly a very serious development which has cast a huge shadow on the Chief Justice". "Democracy can not survive without an independent judiciary", the judge added.
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While crying ourselves hoarse over the opaqueness with which the Collegium operates, can we, at the same time, criticize them for attempting to be transparent about how the institution is functioning? We met CJI this morning, with specific request but we could not convince him.
As a retired judge of the Supreme Court, I feel devastated. Bhushan further said that the CJI was selective in "assigning politically sensitive cases". I don't think it's a good move and I'm not in favour of it at all. He said that Nehru's daughter, former PM Indira Gandhi, however breached the convention of seniority when she appointed Justice AN Ray appointed as Chief Justice of India, superseding three Judges senior to him.
The CJI, for his part, is said to have indicated that he respected every judge and distribution of cases to each of them was done in a "fair manner", keeping the overall load on the judiciary.
The Bharatiya Janata Party, which had steered clear of the rift within the Supreme Court through the day, attacked the Congress for wading into the controversy on Friday evening that the ruling party insisted, was essentially an internal matter of the Supreme Court.
Senior advocate and Congress leader Salman Khurshid on Friday expressed his "sadness" on the statements made by the four Supreme Court judges and said he could feel their agony that compelled them to address the media. It clearly indicates that the Judges were aware that a solution could not be found within the restricted area because of the external influence of the government. To urgent questions whether their press conference was brought on by the composition of the bench hearing petitions on the disputed death of special court judge Loya who had been hearing the Sohrabuddin encounter killing, Justice Gogoi's short, emphatic "Yes", ended the proceedings. From now on every common man could look at all judicial order with suspicion.