Supreme Court's constitutional bench to hear SC/ST's reservation in job promotion case

Ross Houston
November 14, 2017

Without mincing words, Justice Agrawal said the lawyers should tell the court "how to fix the damage that has been done". "The whole country is now doubting the credibility of this institution". "It can be done by withdrawing the petition", Venugopal said. "The Chief Justice Bench of the High Court wants a clarification whether the exemption applies only to Chandigarh", Rohatgi said.

"Do baseless accusations against the Chief Justice of India not amount to contempt?" "Everybody is doubting the system itself", said Justice Mishra. We hope that the Chief Justice may not be involved in this."Shanti Bhushan, in turn, insisted that the matter should be referred to a Constitution Bench to decide on scope of Articles 142 and 144".

The CBI in its charge-sheet presented in court says it has evidence of judges being open to bribes and last month, it arrested, among others, a former judge of the Orissa High Court named IM Quddusi, who allegedly offered to help ensure a favourable verdict in the Supreme Court.

A Bench of Justices J Chelameswar and S Abdul Nazeer had ordered on November 9 that the plea should be heard by a five-judge Constitution Bench of the senior-most judges of the apex court.

He said that the second petition ought not to have been filed when the first petition from Campaign for Judicial Accountability and Reforms was listed before another bench for hearing on November 10.

However, the Supreme Court had earlier already questioned about absence of creamy layer in SC/ST reservations.

"Agreeing with the oral order passed by the Constitution Bench headed by the CJI that there can not be any kind of command directing the CJI to constitute a Bench", Nariman said: "It is an accurate summing up of the true legal position".

Taking a strong note of Bhushan's remark, the Supreme Court said that the controversial FIR by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is not against any judge nor can an FIR be registered against a judge.

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