Bar Council of India urges political parties to not politicise the issue

The Bar Council of India on Saturday said that it had unanimously decided to form a seven-member delegation which will meet the judges of the Supreme Court, a day after four senior justices openly protested against Chief Justice Dipak Misra for reportedly bypassing established traditions in court to assign cases to benches.

“We want that the matter be solved at the earliest,” Bar Council of India Chairperson Manan Kumar Mishra said.

Speaking about the complaint raised by Justices Jasti Chelameswar (pictured above), Ranjan Gogoi, Madan B Lokur and Kurian Joseph, Mishra said that the memorandum of procedure “must be finalised at the earliest”.

“We will write a letter to the government for the same, but is not that big a matter to be brought in public,” he added.

The Bar Council chairperson said the statements made by Congress President Rahul Gandhi and other political parties were unfortunate, and requested them not to politicise the matter. Gandhi had on Friday called for a full court to investigate the claims made by four Supreme Court judges about maladministration in the apex court.

The press conference had evoked mixed reactions from various members of the society.

Mishra, however, praised the government’s reported stance to not interfere as the controversy was part of the “judiciary’s internal matter”.

Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court Bar Association President Vikas Singh said that the justices’ complaints were not substantial. “Just creating doubts in the minds of people will not serve the interest of the judiciary.”

People will “wildly guess” about what is happening inside the top judicial body, and “all kinds of things will be said about the Supreme Court”, he added. The association would now attempt to deal with the doubt instilled in the minds of the public, Singh said, and dismissed a question about impeaching Chief Justice Misra.

On Friday, the four judges alleged that the chief justice had violated conventions in his role as the master of the roster. Chief Justice Misra had moved the Medical Colleges bribery scam from Justice Chelameshwar’s court to his own in November 2017.