Live: Bench led by CJI Dipak Misra transfers petitions related to Justice Loya’s death to SC, next hearing on Feb 2
The Loya case is seen as the trigger for the four senior Supreme Court judges to go public with their criticism of CJI Dipak Misra for allocating sensitive cases to junior judges. Here are the live updates.india Updated: Jan 22, 2018 14:48 IST
The Supreme Court today transferred to itself two petitions, pending at the Bombay High Court and its Nagpur bench, relating to the alleged mysterious death of special CBI judge BH Loya in 2014.
The Loya case is seen as the trigger for the four senior Supreme Court judges — Justices J Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, MB Lokur and Kurian Joseph — to go public with their criticism of CJI Misra for allocating sensitive cases to junior judges. Judge Loya, then presiding over the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case, died in Nagpur on December 1, 2014. Current BJP president Amit Shah was named in the case but in December the same year, he was discharged by the court.
Besides the CJI, Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud will be on the bench, according to the list of business released by the Supreme Court registry on Saturday.
Here are the live updates:
2:20pm: SC restrains all high courts from entertaining any petition relating to Loya’s death, reports PTI
2:18pm: CJI Dipak Misra gets angry after Jaising infers that SC is going to gag media, asks her to retract and apologise.
2:16pm: Vociferous arguments between the two sides in SC. Salve requests petitioners not to make government probe documents public while Dushyant Dave and Indira Jaising say this amounts to gagging the media.
2:15pm: SC also asks lawyers not to cast aspersions on BJP president Amit Shah, who is not a party before it: PTI
2:10pm: As of today, it was a natural death; Do not cast aspersions, says SC.
Let’s look at this matter objectively. It’s a serious issue. Let us be keeper of our own conscience: SC tells senior advocate Dushyant Dave when he objected to appearance of Harish Salve for Maharashtra govt.
2:06pm: Next hearing in the case will be held on February 2
2:05pm: SC transfers to itself two petitions from Bombay high court related to the alleged mysterious death of special CBI judge BH Loya.
2pm: SC tells Maharashtra government to hand over all documents related to death of Justice Loya for examination. The bench also asked petitioners and lawyers to file with the court additional documents in a sealed cover if they wish to.
1:55pm: The Maharashtra government tells SC a discreet inquiry was conducted to probe the death of Justice Loya and 4 judicial officers assured them there was no foul play involved. The three-judge bench recorded statements saying Justice Loya died of cardiac arrest.
1:30pm: Reports say senior advocate Harish Salve, who is appearing for Maharashtra government, has told the court Justice Loya died of cardiac arrest.
1:15pm: SC bench headed by CJI begins hearing the plea, say TV reports.
What we know so far
The two public interest litigations (PILs) demand an independent probe into the death of Judge Loya. The petitions were originally listed before a bench headed by Justice Arun Misra.
On January 16, the bench headed by Justice Arun Misra heard the matter directing the Maharashtra government to share details of the police investigation into Judge Loya’s death with the petitioners and also passed an order for listing of the case before an appropriate bench.
In the SC a roster system is followed to mark cases to benches that sit in the combination of two judges. Roster is notified by the SC registry after the CJI approves it. However, the roster is not made public and even lawyers are unaware of the same.
When a “sensitive matter” or PIL is filed the SC registry brings it to the notice of the CJI who then takes a call on who will hear it.
Justice Arun Misra’s January 16 order, fuelling apprehensions over him hearing the case again came a day after he broke down at a morning tea meet of SC judges where he expressed his anguish at being collateral damage in the fight between the four senior judges and the CJI because their allegations cast aspersions on his abilities.