The Allahabad High Court has decided to move the Supreme Court demanding the strongly critical observations made about its functioning by the Supreme Court last week be expunged. The decision was taken at a full court meeting, attended by a majority of the judges of the court and its Lucknow bench, HT has learnt.
"Many judges are angry at the tone and tenor of the SC’s observations. A resolution has been passed authorising the high court chief justice to approach the SC for removal of the adverse observations,” said a highly placed source.
On November 26, while hearing an appeal against a stay order passed by the Allahabad High Court, a bench of SC judges Gyan Sudha Mishra and Markandey Katju had said: “Something is rotten in the Allahabad high court…Some judges have their kith and kin practising in the same court, and within a few years of starting practice, the sons or relations of the judge become multi-millionaires and have huge bank balances.”
“We are sorry to say a lot of complaints are coming against certain judges of Allahabad high court relating to their integrity,” the bench added.
Allahabad HC registrar general has been sent to Delhi to explore the possibility of either filing a curative petition or a review petition in the SC.
Lawyers’ organisations representing 3,000 lawyers appear to be backing the high court judges at the moment, though a section of the lawyers privately agree with what the Supreme Court said. The high court bar association has also indicated its willingness to move the Supreme Court seeking removal of the remarks.
“There may be isolated cases of corrupt judges, but the SC was certainly not correct in indicting the entire high court,” said bar association secretary, Pranesh Dutt Tripathi. “We will authorise our president to take appropriate steps.”
Former chairman of the Bar Council of India, V C Mishra, had a different view. “There is no denying the problem of ‘uncle judges’ and corruption in the judiciary exists. But I feel it could’ve been pointed out in more acceptable language,” he said.