Apex court to make Collegium move public

Apex court to make Collegium move public
In a major move to bring in transparency, the Supreme Court has decided to make public all recommendations of the Collegium on appointment, transfer and elevation of judges.

The Collegium, headed by the Chief Justice of India and comprising four senior-most judges, put the reasons on the Supreme Court website.

“The resolution (in this regard) is passed to ensure transparency and yet maintain confidentiality in the Collegium system,” it stated.

The recent transfer of Justice Jayant Patel, then seniormost judge of the Karnataka High Court, to the Allahabad High Court just days before his elevation as the chief justice triggered angry reactions from leaders in the Bar.

Justice Patel, too, resigned in protest, following the decision last month.

Bold decision

On Tuesday, the top court took a bold decision to upload all recommendations by the Collegium on its website.

It revealed reasons, including the Intelligence Bureau’s observations, for the recommendations made on Thursday for the elevation of three judicial officers S Ramathilagam, R Tharani, and P Rajamanickam as judges of the Madras High Court.

It also disclosed how it found Vasudevan V Nadathur, judicial member, ITAT, not suitable for elevation.

In another batch of six judicial officers from Tamil Nadu, the Collegium found only three judicial officers T Krishnavalli, R Pongiappan and R Hemalatha suitable for appointment as judges of the Madras HC.

Notably, the resolution was passed unanimously by Chief Justice of India Justice Dipak Misra and the four seniormost judges — Justice J Chelameswar, Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justice Madan B Lokur and Justice Kurian Joseph.

“The decisions henceforth taken by the Collegium indicating the reasons shall be put on the website of the Supreme Court...” the apex court stated.

The Collegium also recommended for the appointment of Ashok Menon, Annie John and Narayana Pisharadi R, all judicial officers, be appointed as judges of the Kerala High Court.

Notably, the resolution was passed unanimously by Chief Justice of India Justice Dipak Misra and the four seniormost judges - Justice J Chelameswar, Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justice Madan B Lokur and Justice Kurian Joseph.

“The decisions henceforth taken by the Collegium indicating the reasons shall be put on the website of the Supreme Court, when the recommendation(s) is/are sent to the Government of India, with regard to the cases relating to initial elevation to the high court bench, confirmation as permanent judge(s) of the high court, elevation to the post of chief justice of high court, transfer of high court chief justices/judges and elevation to the Supreme Court, because on each occasion the material which is considered by the Collegium is different,” the apex court stated.
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