Exclusive: 100 SC lawyers ask for resolution in favour of J. KM Joseph

In a historic move, around 100 Supreme Court lawyers signed a letter requesting the Supreme Court Bar Association to call an extraordinary meeting to pass a resolution in favour of Justice KM Joseph

Photo by Sonu Mehta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images
Photo by Sonu Mehta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images
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Bhasha Singh

In a historic move on Thursday challenging the executive exercising discretion in appointment of Supreme Court judges, around 100 Supreme Court advocates signed a letter requesting Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) to call an extraordinary meeting to pass a resolution against the Centre’s holding up the elevation of Justice KM Joseph to the Supreme Court.

The letter is addressed to Secreatary of Bar Association Vikrant Yadav states “SCBA and its members express their displeasure and opposition to the Executive action of splitting up/ segregating the recommendation of Supreme Court Collegium regarding appointments of two learned Judges of Supreme Court as has been widely reported in news reports and not denied by the Executive. Hence we call upon the Hon’ble President of India to forthwith issue warrants of appointment of both learned Judges."

Below is a copy of the complaint:

Exclusive: 100 SC lawyers ask for resolution in favour of J. KM Joseph

The Supreme Court collegium had recommended that both senior advocate Indu Malhotra and Justice KM Joseph, presently Chief Justice of the Uttarakhand High Court, be elevated to the apex court. However, the Government notified only the appointment of Indu Malhotra while ignoring the name of Justice Joseph. But the Government, said lawyers, has a collegium recommendation for the appointment of both KM Joseph and Indu Malhotra. Under prevailing rules, they can accept or reject both names. They cannot pick and choose.

After this letter, the divide among lawyers is now out in the open, as the SCBA stands divided on both this issue and the issue of impeachment notice against Chief Justice Dipak Misra.

Many advocates spoke to National Herald against what they perceive is a kind of “vendetta” that the Central Govt is playing with the Supreme Court, due to which a lot of concerns are being raised about independence of judiciary. The proposed resolution is endorsed by senior lawyers Chander Uday Singh, Vivek Tankha, Indira Jaising, Arvind Datar, A Sirajudeen, Hufeza Ahmadi, Jayant Bhushan, Harin P Raval and Pallav Sisodia, among many others.

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