New Delhi: Justice J. Chelameswar, the senior-most Supreme Court judge after the Chief Justice of India said the allocation of important and sensitive cases to different benches should be done transparently and not in an arbitrary manner.
“We are not questioning his (C JI Dipak Misra) authority as master of the roster but it should not be exercised in an arbitrary manner but in a transparent manner,” Chelameswar said. Buttressing his point that not everything was right in the allocation of cases, Justice Chelameswar said: “You come and walk in the corridor of the Supreme Court and you will hear that the allocation of cases is not transparent.”
He was talking to Journalist Karan Thapar at an event, “Role of Judiciary in Democracy”, organised by Harvard Club of India here. The conversation went on for about 90 minutes. About the opposition chorus seeking an impeachment of the Chief Justice, Justice Chelameswar said it was “not an answer for every problem”. “Some system is required to be set-up so that these problems don’t arise.”
He was one of the judges who held an unprecedented press conference in January, mounting a virtual revolt against the chief justice and listing a litany of problems that they said were plaguing the country’s highest court. They warned that these problems, including allocation of cases by the Chief Justice, could damage Indian democracy.