Supreme Court order today on fate of judge 'bribery' pleas

Supreme Court

The bench of Justices RK Agrawal, Arun Mishra and AM Khanvilkar on Monday called it a "deliberate attempt to scandalise the court and judiciary". It is expected to pronounce an order on the maintainability and propriety of Jaiswal's petition on Tuesday, and decide if filing two petitions with identical facts amounted to "forum shopping". The bench repeatedly warned Prashant Bhushan and other arguing counsel for committing gross contempt of court by making scurrilous allegations against CJI without a shred of evidence. The other petition in the court was filed by the Campaign for Judicial Accountability and Reforms.

Appearing for Tamil Nadu government, senior counsel Mukul Rohatgi, submitted that the Madras high court had stayed the notification on liquor shops observing that the July 11 order pertained only to Chandigarh and not to the whole country.

The petition, filed by advocate Anupam Tripathi, said tigers were being killed either by poisoning by locals or the authorities, shooting by forest guards or by poaching. "Now the question is how to fix the damage?"

Petitioners Kavitha Kuruganti, Amar Singh Azad, and V.R. Ananthasayanan said farmers and farm workers need assistance of the central and state governments to get their right to health by gradually shifting to organic farming that is free of harmful pesticides. "Why can't you listen to the AG", said Justice Agarwal responding to the allegations by Bhushans.

"One of the three Judges hearing the case dealt with the matter, so he can't hear the case", Shanti Bhushan said.

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. The judge chose to take up the petition.

However, on November 10, in an unprecedented hearing, a five-judge constitution bench headed by CJI Dipak Misra had ruled that "no judge can take up a matter on his own, unless allocated by the chief justice of India, as he is the master of the roster". The petitioners had said that the bench should exclude Chief Justice Dipak Misra, who handled cases related to the Medical Council of India earlier this year, as there would be a conflict of interest.



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