The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday clarified that the bench headed by the seniormost judge at its Lucknow bench will continue to hear the case against Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati in the Taj Corridor scam.
The bench, headed by Justice Pradeep Kant and Justice Shabihul Hasnain, “is still seized of the matter and has passed detailed orders on September 23 in which orders were reserved by the same bench on August 23”, Registrar General of the court Dinesh Gupta said in a statement.
“The correct facts are that hon’ble Chief Justice has for administrative convenience in exercise of the exclusive powers vested in him classified the PIL work into civil and criminal,” he said.
The Registrar General further clarified that those matters, which are reserved for judgment or where final arguments are part heard, will be retained with the benches hearing such matters.
Gupta said the PILs were bifurcated into civil and criminal following a note by the registry at the Lucknow bench on July 23, based on the report of the computer section regarding huge pendency of PIL matters.
“The note was approved by the hon’ble chief justice on July 30. The registry proceeded with bifurcating the PIL matters and proposed arrangement on August 20 for classifying arrangements,” said the statement.
On the administrative orders issued by the Chief Justice F. I. Rebello on August 23 and 28, the Registrar General has said it was necessitated by an order passed by a two-judge bench of the court seeking clarification if a particular case was to be treated as criminal or civil PIL.
On the meeting between Justice Rebello and Mayawati, Gupta said: “The hon’ble Chief Justice paid a courtesy call to hon’ble chief minister on July 21. As per the established tradition, the CM paid a return call to the hon’ble CJ on August 19.”