It’s duty of judges to show respect to members of the Bar, says CJI Dipak Misra
Amid the ongoing crisis in the apex court, Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra on Friday said “the Supreme Court is one”.
Speaking at a function to bid farewell to justice RK Agrawal, the CJI said, “As has been told, the Supreme Court is one. The Bar fosters us, nurtures us and on every occasion, I have told the young members of the Bar, be the guiding angels.”
“Whatever your status is, whatever your stature is; it is the duty of the judges to show respect to the members of the Bar despite their age or status. I personally and individually feel so and do so,” he said at the function organised by the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA).
With justice Agrawal’s retirement, the vacancy in the Supreme Court once again rises to seven. At present, there are 24 judges as against the sanctioned strength of 31.
During his address, justice Agrawal also called for unity between the Bar and Bench. Though he did not refer to the present crisis, SCBA president Vikas Singh read out from the judge’s speech delivered at the Madras high court when he was elevated to the top court. Singh said the words spoken by justice Agrawal then were relevant now.
The judge had given the speech in the background of fights between the police and lawyers and the justice Karnan episode. He had then said: “Friends, we will come and go, but the institution shall remain. We should not do anything to damage its name. As you are aware, it takes years to build a reputation and only a moment to destroy it. We have to be very careful in our conduct. The danger is from within, and not from outside. We have to be very careful in our acts.”
Praising justice Agrawal, the CJI called him the pride of the Supreme Court.
A three-judge bench headed by justice Agrawal had rejected a public interest litigation (PIL) last year asking for a court-monitored, independent probe into the alleged medical admission scam in which the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested a former judge of the Orissa HC.
The bench had also imposed a cost of Rs 25 lakh on the petitioner — Campaign for Judicial accountability and Reforms.