PM event to bring CJI face to face with Oppn leaders who sought his ouster
Congress president Rahul Gandhi, leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad and Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar are expected to attend the meeting on May 2.Updated: May 01, 2018 06:59 IST
Days after the Opposition sought a motion for his removal, Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra will come face to face with some of those leaders on May 2 at a meeting led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for planning celebrations on Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi, leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad and Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar are expected to attend. However, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury, who is part of the 114-member panel constituted by the culture ministry to approve policies, programmes and guide the commemoration of Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary, will not attend the meeting.
The panel, in its first meeting on Wednesday, will also decide on the broad dates and programme for the celebration.
Although the agenda is way beyond the realm of partisan politics, the meeting will see the CJI and Opposition leaders sharing space shortly after some of them backed a move to remove him. Several Congress, NCP and Left MPs had come together and served a notice to Vice President Venkaiah Naidu for Misra’s removal a week ago. The VP had rejected the move that the Congress is considering challenging legally.
Naidu refused to accept the proposal and remarked that the allegations have a “serious tendency” to undermine the independence of the judiciary. Finance minister Arun Jaitley lashed out at the Opposition in a blog post shortly after and said the notice was meant to intimidate the judiciary.
Opposition leaders had maintained that Naidu should have formed a panel to review the charges instead of rejecting the notice outright.
Yechury, who had first mooted the idea to push a motion for CJI’s removal will miss the meeting because he says he is attending a seminar in England on the occasion of the 200th birth anniversary of Karl Marx. “I will definitely attend all the subsequent meetings,” he added.
Apart from Modi, the CJI and the Opposition leaders, the panel includes all state chief ministers, senior BJP ministers and eminent scholars.