See how govt is hauled up everyday, apex court judges are not pro-government: SC
A bench of chief justice Dipak Misra and justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud were responding to a former Supreme Court Bar Association president’s remarks that some Supreme Court judges were “pro-government”.Updated: Oct 05, 2017 18:29 IST
The Supreme Court on Thursday took strong exception to comments by senior advocate Dushyant Dave who said some judges are pro-government.
Frowning at the comment made by Dave, a former Supreme Court Bar Association president, on a television show last week, justice DY Chandrachud said: “Somebody has to sit in the Supreme Court to see in how many cases we haul up the government in favour of citizens.”
Justice Chandrachud made this observation during a hearing on a petition against Uttar Pradesh politician Azam Khan for his statement calling a case of gang-rape a political conspiracy. The Supreme Court bench hearing the matter also comprised Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra and justice AM Khanwilkar.
Dave had called Supreme Court judges pro-government during a TV show discussing the resignation of justice Jayant Patel of the Karnataka High Court. Justice Patel was tipped to become the acting chief justice of the high court on October 9 but was shifted by the Supreme Court collegium to Allahabad high court.
During his time in the Gujarat high court, it was Justice Patel who had ordered a CBI investigation into the 2004 killing of Ishrat Jehan, who was allegedly on a mission to kill Narendra Modi, then chief minister of Gujarat.
The Supreme Court also took exception over posts on Twitter reporting discussions in court.
“All kinds of comments are made on Twitter on our observations and comments made in court and observations are treated as judgements of this court,” said Justice Chandrachud.
The court said this as it referred to a Constitution bench the question about the extent of restraint a person holding a public office, including a minister, can be put under while commenting on sub judice matters or those under investigation by state agencies.
The bench referred the matter to the Constitution Bench after amicus curiae Fali S. Nariman and Harish Salve said that an increasing number of matters were coming up wherein persons holding high positions in government were making controversial statements on matters pending before courts or being investigated by state agencies.
The issue is rooted in a controversial statement by Azam Khan who had dubbed the Bulandshahr gang-rape case as a political conspiracy.
A woman and her teenaged daughter were gang-raped by five to six men in the fields of Dostpur village on National Highway-91 in Bulandshahr district on the night of July 29 and 30, 2016.