New Delhi: In a letter to Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, senior lawyer Prashant Bhushan has sought an in-house inquiry against Justice Surya Kant who is rumoured to be elevated as the next Supreme Court chief. Currently, Justice Surya Kant serves as the chief justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court. If the rumoured elevation is approved, Surya Kant will serve as the CJI from November 2025 to February 2027.
In the letter to Gogoi, Bhushan added that there are complaints against Surya Kant for conducting illegal property transactions and abusing the authority.
According to a report by a leading portal, Bhushan’s letter stated, “In our opinion, his name should not be considered for elevation to this Hon’ble Court without getting these serious allegations against him credibly investigated.”
In January 2018, Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel, in a written statement to the then CJI Dipak Mishra, had clearly expressed his “respectful disagreement with the proposal” of Justice Surya Kant as the Chief Justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court. Justice Goel was quoted as having said, “Justice Surya Kant is not suitable for appointment as Chief Justice till the thorough inquiry is conducted, as I have already opined.”
In 2017 also, Justice Goel’s opinion was sought in the matter concerning Surya Kant’s elevation as the Chief Justice of Himachal Pradesh High Court. Goel had said to then CJI JS Khera that there were several complaints against Surya Kant, including property-related cases, after he was appointed as the judge.
Justice Goel had recommended an independent inquiry into the properties acquired by Surya Kant. In January 2018, Justice Goel wrote to Justice Mishra that his recommendations were not taken into considerations as he did not receive any feedback. Thereafter, Justice Surya Kant became the Chief Justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court in October 2018.