NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed a petition seeking the Centre’s response over the delay in finalising the Memorandum of Procedure (MoP) for the appointment of judges. A three-judge bench recalled the order of the two-judge bench that had issued a notice to the Centre on a PIL advocate RP Luthra asking why appointments were being made through the MoP had not been finalised.
It found fault with the smaller bench’s order, saying these issues cannot be taken up on the judicial side as the law had already been settled by a constitution bench in the National Judicial Appointments Commission case.
At present, seven High Courts are headed by Acting Chief Justices. Some of them have been continuing for months. The hearing witnessed heated exchanges between the bench, advocate Luthra and amicus curiae KV Viswanathan, who was appointed by the smaller bench. “There is a feeling that there is a delay. The number of vacancies in High Courts is shocking,” Vishwanathan told the bench.
But the bench looked unconvinced and said, “You don’t know what all steps we have taken and we do not intend to say it here. Your grievance is that you were not considered for appointment as a Supreme Court judge. You don’t need to raise your voice for this. You have come here to plead before the court. I personally wonder whether, with this demeanour, it can be considered.”