NEW DELHI: The Opposition on Thursday slammed the Centre for blocking Justice KM Joseph’s elevation as Supreme Court judge even as it congratulated the direct upgrade of senior advocate Indu Malhotra.
“We congratulate Indu Malhotra for directly becoming SC judge. But Collegium had stated that Justice KM Joseph is highly deserving of elevation. The SC website had released a notification on the same. Why is his position not being elevated by the Central government,” Congress spokesperson Kapil Sibal said at an AICC briefing.Former union minister P Chidambaram too expressed similar views.
“Delighted that Indu Malhotra will be sworn in as Judge of the Supreme Court tomorrow. Disappointed that Justice KM Joseph’s appointment is still on hold! What is holding up Justice KM Joseph’s appointment? His State or his religion or his judgment in the Uttarakhand case,” Chidambaram tweeted.
The former finance minister wondered if the government thought it was above the law.“As the law stands now, the recommendation of the SC Collegium is final and binding in the appointment of judges. Is the Modi government above the law,” Chidambaram tweeted.
The CPI(M) Polit Bureau statement said the President of India must immediately intervene to ensure that procedures were followed and the appointment of Justice Joseph was cleared.
“The Collegium of the Supreme Court had forwarded the names of Justice KM Joseph and senior advocate Indu Malhotra to be elevated as judges to the SC. After considerable delay the appointment of Malhotra has been cleared, said the CPI(M). However, the government has not cleared the appointment of Justice Joseph. This is an unwarranted intrusion into the selection process of a judge and will affect the independence of the judiciary,” said the statement.
JD-U rebel Sharad Yadav said “it is a very serious matter and Supreme Court should resolve it.”