New Delhi, Jan 12: In an unprecedented and “extraordinary” event in the history of Indian judiciary, four senior sitting judges of the Supreme Court on Friday addressed the media to allege that the administration of the country’s top court was not in order. However, the government reportedly downplayed the developments saying that it was just an internal matter of the judiciary.
Calling the reactions of Justice J Chelameshwar, Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justice Madan Lokur and Justice Kurian Joseph an internal matter, the government sources said the judiciary must sort it out, according to News 18. Meanwhile, the government is monitoring the situation and the Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra is likely to meet Attorney General to discuss the matter.
Speaking to news agency ANI, senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Subramanian Swamy said the four judges shouldn’t be criticised for holding the press conference as ‘they are men of great integrity and have sacrificed a lot of their legal career’. “Prime Minister Narendra Modi must ensure that the four judges and Chief Justice of India, in fact, whole Supreme Court come to one opinion and proceed further,” Swamy added.
Reacting to the press conference, former Law Minister and Congress Salman Khurshid said, “I feel a sense of agony that highest court of land should come under such severe stress that forces judges to address the media.” Senior lawyer Ujjwal Nikam said Supreme Court judges’ press conference would cause a bad precedent. “This is a black day for Judiciary. From now on every common man could look at all judicial order with suspicion. Every judgement will be questioned,” Nikam said.
Justices Madan B. Lokur, Kurien Joseph, Ranjan Gogoi and Jasti Chelameswar addressed the press conference and appealed to the nation to save their institution if they wanted democracy in the country to survive. Speaking on behalf of the four judges, Justice Chelameswar expressed his lament over the corrosion and compromise taking place within the institution of the judiciary and especially within the portals of the Supreme Court.
He said, “Administration of the Supreme Court is not in order. Many things less than desirable have happened in the last few months. We owe a responsibility to the institution and the nation. We tried to collectively persuade the Chief Justice that certain things are not in order and remedial measures are necessary. Unfortunately, our efforts have failed in convincing the Chief Justice of India to take steps to protect this institution.”