Four senior SC judges call unprecedented press conference: All you need to know as it happened

The four sitting judges indicated that there is a lack of communication with the CJI which is why they were forced to go public and express their 'discomfort'.

Published: 12th January 2018 12:08 PM  |   Last Updated: 12th January 2018 07:11 PM   |  A+A-

Justice J Chelameswar and three other sitting Supreme Court judges addressing a press conference in New Delhi. (PTI)

By Online Desk

In an unprecedented and "extraordinary" event in the history of Indian judiciary, four senior most judges of the Supreme Court on Friday met the media to allege that the administration of the country's top court was not in order.

"It is an extraordinary event in the history of judiciary and more particularly in this nation, even for this institution (Supreme Court). It is with no pleasure that we have been compelled to do this... Justice J Chelameswar-- the No.2 in the apex court hierarchy -- said at a hastily called press conference at his residence today. [READ FULL REPORT OF THE PRESS CONFERENCE]

Here are the updates: 

  • This act of Supreme Court judges coming out together and speaking to the media about an issue involving the top court does not bode well for the judiciary. This is a symptom of the deeper malaises afflicting the top judiciary. It is high time the judiciary engaged in a thorough introspection of its critical role in a democracy and put in place a truly transparent system in the interests of justice for all: Baleshwar Sharma, former chairman, Bihar State Bar Council

  • This unprecedented news conference indicates that everything is not right within the nation’s top court. I wish the issues involved should have been dealt with in a better way without drawing attention to individual judges. Such news conferences will certainly tarnish the image of the higher judiciary and give a chance to the executive and politicians to step in to curb the judiciary’s independence: Shantanu Kumar, senior advocate, Patna High Court

  • The issues raised by the four senior Supreme Court judges in the unprecedented press conference today are an internal matter of the judiciary, highly placed sources told PTI, indicating that the government is unlikely to interfere.

  • "There must be some serious reason that they were left with no other option but to hold a Press Conference. But what connection does Loya have with this? I know nothing about this and I don't want to make comments about any political matter," says Mukul Mudgal, retired High Court judge.

  • Judges had to come before media and take this unprecedented step. This means that there is a serious dispute, either with Chief Justice of India or some internal dispute: PB Sawant, former Supreme Court judge tells ANI.

  • Hearing in remaining matters commences in Chief Justice of India's court, say legal sites and TV reports.

  • Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra met the Attorney General KK Venugopal, sources tell media.

READ: Who are the four 'rebel' Supreme Court judges who called for protecting the judiciary?

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to Law Minister RS Prasad about the allegations made by the four Supreme Court judges: Sources

  • Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra to address the media at 2 pm, Attorney General to also accompany him.

  • This is a black day for Judiciary. Today's press conference would cause a bad precedent. From now on every common man could look at all judicial order with suspicion. Every judgement will be questioned : Ujjwal Nikam, senior lawyer

  • We can't criticize them, they are men of great integrity and have sacrificed a lot of their legal career, where they could've made money as senior counsels. We must respect them. PM must ensure that the four judges and CJI, in fact whole SC come to one opinion and proceed further says senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy.

  • It is certainly a very serious development which has cast a huge shadow on the Chief Justice. Somebody had to confront the situation, where CJI is blatantly misusing his powers, hence the unprecedented step: SC lawyer Prashant Bhushan to ANI

READ | Tussle in judiciary: SC reverses order, says CJI is master of the roster, Prashant Bhushan walks out of hearing

  • Issues don't matter. It is their complaint on administrative matter. They are only 4, there are 23 others. Four get together and show the Chief Justice in a poor light. It is immature & childish behaviour. I think all 4 judges should be impeached, they have no business to sit there and deliver verdicts anymore. This trade unionism is wrong. Democracy in danger is not for them to say, we have parliament, courts, police functioning: Justice R S Sodhi (retd) tells ANI on press conference.

  • CJI Dipak Misra has reportedly called Attorney General K K Venugopal to his chambers to hold discussions over the press conference called by the four SC judges. 

  • We are not mentioning details only to avoid embarrassing the institution but note that such departures have already damaged the image of this intuition to some extent: Supreme Court Judges in letter to CJI

  • There have been instances where case having far-reaching consequences for nation & the institution had been assigned by Chief Justice of this court selectively to benches 'of their preference' w/o rationale basis. This must be guarded against at all costs: SC judges to CJI

  • Union Law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, minister of state for Law PP Chaudhary to visit the PMO and attend a meeting regarding shocking revelations made by four senior SC judges today at the Judges press conference.

  • It is too well settled in the jurisprudence of this country that the Chief Justice is only first amongst the equals- nothing more or nothing less: Supreme Court Judges in letter to Chief Justice of India (ANI)

  • A seven-page letter addressed to CJI Deepak Misra undersigned by the four judges is released to the media. 

READ:  Full text of the letter addressed to CJI Dipak Misra


  • It is with great anguish and concern that we thought it proper to highlight certain judicial orders passed by this Court that adversely affected functioning of justice delivery system & independence of HCs besides impacting administrative functioning of CJI's office: SC Judges to CJI, reports ANI.

  • We have spotted things in the last few months and tried to intervene but to no avail, so we have to take this step of addressing the public: Justice Chelameshwar. 

  • We are protesting against the manner in which CJI Dipak Misra has been allocating the cases to benches.

  • Senior judges at the press conference admit that the issues also pertain to Justice Loya's case. However, they do not disclose details. 

READ: CBI court judge in Sohrabuddin encounter case murdered? Family finally opens up 

  • Even this morning on a particular issue all senior most judges went to CJI with a specific request but we could not convince him. Left with no choice but to communicate it to the nation, says Justice J Chalmeswar. 

  • Top court administration is not in order.

  • The four judges are asked questions about the Justice Loya case.

  • We have persuaded Chief Justice to take some remedial measures to save the institution of the apex court but nothing worked out.

  • It's an extraordinary event in history of judiciary, we are compelled to call this press conference. 

In October, Supreme Court judge Justice Ranjan Gogoi had said that backlogs are plaguing the judicial system of the country and has gained it disrepute in the international community.

Kurian Joseph was the 2nd Judge in the five-judge constitution bench on the crucial triple talaq issue and is said to retire in November 2018. 


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