Saturday, 23 June, 2018

CJI Dipak Misra's bench to hear Judge Loya case on Monday

JCP recommends LHC CJ’s elevation to SC CJI Dipak Misra meets the four senior-most SC judges
Ellis Copeland | 21 January, 2018, 01:35

A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra said it will look into the matter only after the apex court Registry takes the petition on record and lists it for hearing.

They included justices S A Bobde and L Nageswara Rao, who had visited Justice Chelameswar's official residence here a couple of times since the January 12 news conference.The top four judges had gone public with their grievances against the Chief Justice of India, saying "unless the judiciary was preserved, democracy can't be protected in the country".

Now it is up to the CJI to assign this case to another bench, which will be known in the next few days.

Justices A.K. Sikri, A.M. Kanwilkar and D.Y. Chandrachud are mediating with the four judges and the Chief Justice to hammer out a solution at the earliest, keeping in mind the fact that the judiciary's image was already dented by the unilateral move by the four judges to air their grievances before the media.

The Supreme Court (SC) may be back to functioning as usual but the ripples of the judicial rift over the allocation of cases and other administrative challenges before the country's top court continue to be felt.

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This comes after Justice Arun Mishra recused himself from the case last week.

The court said it will examine the plea once the petition is formally listed before it.

While the BJP president was acquitted in the case on December 30, 2014, the two PILs filed by Congress spokesperson Tehseen Poonawalla and journalist Bandhuraj Sambhaji Lone argued that Loya's death on December 1, 2014 was not accidental.

Justice Arun Mishra's January 16 order, fuelling apprehensions over him hearing the case again came a day after he broke down at a morning tea meet of SC judges where he expressed his anguish at being collateral damage in the fight between the four senior judges and the CJI because their allegations cast aspersions on his abilities. "It was, therefore, mentioned to the chief who said the case would be now be heard by the bench as per roster", Shenoy explained.

The written order, which was released later that evening by the Bench had ordered the matter to be "put up before the appropriate bench". On Saturday, the case was scheduled to be heard on Monday by a Bench headed by the CJI.

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