The Delhi High Court Wednesday deferred hearing on a petition of the apex court challenging the Central Information Commission (CIC) order that information on assets of judges should be revealed.
Justice S. Ravindra Bhat of the high court adjourned the hearing till Feb 27 after Solicitor General GE Vahanvati submitted that they need some more time to file their reply.
The court Jan 19 stayed the CIC order that the office of the Chief Justice of India (CJI) comes within the ambit of the Right to Information (RTI) Act and that the information given to the CJI has to be revealed to the RTI applicant.
The petition was filed by the apex court's registrar, who is the information officer under the RTI Act, challenging the Jan 6 order of the CIC.
In the petition, the Supreme Court registrar said that the declaration of assets by the Supreme Court judges to the CJI was not a mandatory exercise under the law.
Objecting to the CIC's order, the registrar said the order was excessive and without jurisdiction, and the appeal made distinction between the apex court as an institution and the office of the CJI.
"Neither is the office of the CJI a public authority nor does the information relating to judges' assets come in the public domain," the Supreme Court said.
Filing an application under RTI Act, Subhash Chandra Aggarwal sought to know whether the apex court judges comply with the 1997 resolution and declare their assets to the CJI.
In the application, Aggarwal also sought to know whether the judges of high courts disclose their assets to their chief justices.