NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court collegium has recommended the elevation of four judges as chief justices of the high courts of Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Telangana.
A three-member collegium headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi recommended Justice D N Patel’s appointment as Chief Justice of Delhi High Court since incumbent Chief Justice Rajendra Menon is set to retire. Likewise, promotions of justices A A Kureshi, V Ramasubramanian and R S Chauhan as chief justices of high courts of Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Telangana respectively have been recommended.
Justice Ramasubramanian is the senior-most judge of the Madras High Court and at present, is functioning, on transfer, in the Telangana High Court. While recommending his elevation, the collegium said it had taken into consideration the fact that at present there is only one chief justice from the Madras High Court.
In Telangana, the post of CJ for the recently-constituted separate HC has been vacant. The collegium proposed promoting Telangana’s acting Chief Justice Chauhan as its first chief justice.
Justice Kureshi, the senior-most judge of the Gujarat HC, and functioning on transfer in the Bombay HC, is proposed to be elevated as Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh HC.
Justice Chauhan took charge as the Acting Chief Justice of the Telangana HC after the transfer of Justice TBN Radhakrishnan as Chief Justice of the Calcutta HC in March. Justice Chauhan, born on Dec 24, 1959, graduated from Arcadia University, Glenside, PA (USA) in 1980, and obtained his LLB from Delhi University in 1983.
He enrolled as an advocate with the Rajasthan Bar Council on Nov 13, 1983, and practised at the Rajasthan HC from 1986 to 2005. He was elevated as a permanent judge on June 13, 2005 and was sworn in as a judge of the Karnataka HC a decade later. On Nov 23, 2018, he started serving at the erstwhile Hyderabad HC, which later became the Telangana HC.
As for the recommendation to appoint Justice Ramasubramanian as the next CJ of the Himachal Pradesh HC, the Collegium pointed out that the post would fall vacant upon the elevation of the court’s CJ, Justice Surya Kant, to the Supreme Court. Justice Ramasubramanian is the senior-most judge from the Madras HC, and is functioning, on transfer in the Telangana HC.
With the elevation of Justice Ramasubramanian, the Telangana HC will have 10 judges, including the CJ, as against its sanctioned strength of 24. The strength will go up to 11 with the transfer of Justice Ghandikota Sri Devi from Allahabad HC to Telangana HC.