Judges' meeting a positive sign in solving SC crisis

Illustration Ajit Ninan

Justice Mishra reportedly claimed that he had been performing his duties sincerely, despite his failing health.

Noone, but the chief justice of India was questioned for his professional behaviour by the top judges, who are his colleagues but not treated like one.

During the meeting, the sources said, Justice Misra and the rebel judges discussed all the outstanding issues, point of contentions and differences. The four dissenting judges - Justices Jasti Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan B Lokur and Kurian Joseph - took up their respective business on the first working day after the January 12 press conference. However, it was not immediately known as to why judges met or whether the meeting was related to the ongoing crisis or not. When the judges met informally at the Supreme Court lounge, the subject apparently was not raised by anyone as an uneasy calm prevailed. "We are thankful to the four judges and the CJI that they resolved the matter on their own", he said.

However, the Chief Justice smiled and remained silent. Attorney General K.K. Venugopal had, in the meantime, predicted the "impasse" to come to an end by Monday but that wasn't the case to be.

"This issue needs to be resolved. for allocation of benches and distribution of cases, which are rational, fair and transparent".

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An informal meeting of CJI Dipak Misra with all Supreme Court judges is understood to have taken place before the start of the proceedings in courts, delaying the assembling of the benches by about 10 minutes in the morning.

The other key matter is a petition seeking an investigation into the death of Maharastra special CBI judge Brijmohan Loya, who was handling the Sohrabuddin Sheik fake encounter case in which Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah had been accused.

The judges who have been included in the 5-judge constitution bench had previous year heard various constitution bench matters from October 10, which includes the power tussle between the Centre and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Delhi over administrative jurisdiction and a matter relating to passive euthanasia.

In the January 12 presser, these judges had flagged some issues, including the assigning of cases in the apex court, and said there were certain problems afflicting the country's highest court.

They have alleged that important and sensible cases were allocated to junior judges bypassing senior ones.

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