SC collegium to reiterate Justice KM Joseph's name for elevation

Justice KM Joseph's Elevation as Supreme Court Judge Recommended Again by Collegium

However, the collegium also decided that the said reiteration should be accompanied by the recommendation of the names of Chief Justices of High Courts for elevation for which detailed discussion is required.

At the meeting of Collegium - the topmost decision-making body of the Supreme Court - the five senior-most judges, including Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, unanimously agreed to reiterate Justice KM Joseph's name to Centre for elevation as apex court judge.

The Collegium, in a resolution, said there was need for further discussion on the issue of sending the other names to the Centre and chose to meet again on May 16.

Setting aside differences, Chief Justice Dipak Misra and the four seniormost judges of the Supreme Court (SC) which comprises the collegium came together on Friday to take on the Centre on the issue of appointment of Uttarakhand Chief Justice K M Joseph as a judge of the apex court.

On 26 April, the government rejected the collegium's recommendation to elevate Joseph but accepted its recommendation to elevate senior advocate Indu Malhotra as a judge of the apex court.

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The Supreme Court Collegium on Friday chose to return the name of Justice KM Joseph to the Centre for appointment as judge of the apex court. It had previously met on May 2 but deferred its decision on the matter.

Even before Friday's decision, members of the Collegium had given indications of a possible unanimity on the name of returning the recommendation of Justice Joseph. One, that he was not senior enough as he stood at number 42 in the seniority list, and second, that he hailed from Kerala, a state which already has enough representation in the SC. It is believed that just sending Justice K M Joseph's name back would have suggested that the apex court was directly challenging the Centre and so, a middle-of-the-road course was adopted. "To consider names of High Court Judges for elevation as Judges of the Supreme Court".

The Centre has drawn flak for its treatment of Justice Joseph, the chief justice of Uttarakhand High Court, who many believe had angered the government by quashing President's rule in Uttarakhand in April 2016.

It is also learnt that Justice Chelameswar, who retires on June 22, has responded to all the points raised in the communication to the CJI by Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad expressing reservations on the elevation of Justice Joseph.

Justice Chelameshwar alleged that the administration of the Supreme Court was not in order.The judges claimed to have a written a letter to justice Mishra for which they had not received a reply.

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