Collegium defers its decision on Justice Joseph

Supreme Court collegium again defers reiterating Justice KM Joseph’s elevation to top court Reports

Wikimedia Commons Augustus Binu

The decision on elevating Justice K M Joseph to the Supreme Court has been deferred.

On April 26, Union law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had announced that the government had cleared the elevation of advocate Ms Indu Malhotra and put on hold Justice Joseph's elevation.

Three candidates have been nominated for a vacancy on Colorado's Supreme Court, created by Chief Justice Nancy Rice's retirement.

The Collegium is to meet again on May 16 to discuss the other judges. It would now wait for the other list to come up and is expected to recommend Justice Joseph's name too.

"In view of the above, the Collegium resolves to recommend, for the present, that Mr. Justice Ramchandra Singh Jhala, Additional Judge be appointed as Permanent Judge of the Rajasthan High Court against one of the existing vacancies". Members also deliberated on whether Justice Joseph would lose his seniority if his name was clubbed with the others.

The collegium, which had met last on May 2, parted on an inconclusive note.

The collegium comprises Chief Justice Dipak Misra and four other senior-most judges of the apex court - Justice J Chelameswar, Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justice Madan Lokur and Justice Kurian Joseph.

The Supreme Court collegium has again deferred a formal decision on sending the file relating to the elevation of Justice K.M. Joseph as a judge of the apex court, though it has stuck to its decision of "in principle, unanimously" reiterating the recommendation for his promotion.

Till 9 pm, the resolution of Wednesday's meeting has not been uploaded in the Supreme Court website. Both the proposals were sent on January 10 this year.

There are now seven vacancies in the Supreme Court, with two more vacancies likely to arise in the next two months, due to the retirement of Justices J. Chelameswar on June 22, and Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel, on July 6.

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