SC crisis: Judges urge CJI to come up with plan to resolve issue
The Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra and four dissenting judges - Justices Ranjan Gogoi, Kurian Joseph, Madan B. Lokur and Justice Chelameswar met on Wednesday for lunch at the Supreme Court, amid efforts at ending a rift that could impact important cases.
The dissenting judges, who demand a stronger institution, have said "something is happening and they are ready for a debate", sources said, reports NDTV.
They also asserted that Chief Justice Mishra has to come out with a plan solve this issue.
The development comes a day after CJI Misra met in his chambers the four judges who had aired grievances against him in a press conference last week.
Justices AK Sikri, AM Khanwilkar, and DY Chandrachud were the ones who initiated a talk between the four judges and the CJI and were there until the end of the meeting.
It was at the request of these three judges that CJI Misra met the four judges who have written him a letter on January 12.
The meeting, which started at 10.10 am lasted for around 15 minutes before the judges took up their work for their day.
However, according to the reports, the meeting did not bear any fruits and the two parties are set to meet today again in order to resolve the issue.
Despite the optimism expressed by legal bodies, the crisis in the Supreme Court over complaints against the chief justice seemed far from over. The five judges will meet again on Wednesday.
At a press conference last week, the four judges had flagged certain problems, including the assigning of cases by the CJI, and said there were certain issues afflicting the country's highest court.
They went on to add that the Chief Justice was abusing his position as the 'master of the roster' and assigning cases having far-reaching consequences for the nation and the institution selectively to benches "of his preference" without any rationale basis for such assignment.
Their criticism didn't seem to have had any effect on the CJI, though. The Constitution Bench that begins hearings tomorrow on several important cases doesn't have any of the four judges.
The Bar Council of India on Monday said that the rift between the CJI and the four rebel judges has been "laid to rest". A day after, Attorney General KK Venugopal said that the "judges' conflict is not settled". "From what has been reported, I accept that the judges' conflict is not settled.We are in the process to resolve the issue. It would be done shortly," Venugopal said.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Supreme Court of India announced the composition of a 5-judge constitution bench headed by CJI Dipak Misra to hear major cases including those challenging the constitutional validity of the Aadhaar Act. However, the four senior-most judges who rebelled against the CJI saying "all is not well" were not included in the 5-judge constitution bench.