In a major reshuffle, the Supreme Court collegium has recommended to the Centre the transfer of four Chief Justices of high courts including Andhra Pradesh High Court’s Chief Justice JK Maheshwari to the Sikkim High Court, weeks after Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy had complained to the Chief Justice of India about the state’s top judiciary.
In an unprecedented move, the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, on October 6, had written to Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde alleging that the state High Court was being used to “destabilise and topple” his democratically-elected government.
The collegium headed by the Chief Justice of India, in its meeting held on December 14, also recommended elevation of five high court judges as Chief Justices of different High Courts including Justice Dr S Muralidhar whose notification transferring him to Punjab and Haryana High Court close to mid night of February 26 had created a huge controversy, reported news agency Press Trust of India.
Justice Muralidhar has been recommended to be elevated as Chief Justice of Orissa High Court.
Justice Muralidhar’s transfer from Delhi High Court to Punjab and Haryana High Court was notified on the day a bench headed by him had pulled up Delhi Police for failing to register FIRs against three BJP leaders for their alleged hate speeches which purportedly led to the recent violence in northeast Delhi.
The collegium had in a meeting on February 12 recommended the transfer of Justice Muralidhar to Punjab and Haryana High Court.
As per recent collegium’s recommendations posted on Supreme Court’s website, the collegium, besides recommending transfer of Chief Justice Maheshwari to Sikkim High Court, has also recommended the transfer of Sikkim High Court Chief Justice AK Goswami to the Andhra Pradesh High Court.
It has approved the proposal to transfer Telangana High Court Chief Justice RS Chauhan as Chief Justice of Uttarakhand High Court while Orissa High Court Chief Justice Mohammed Rafiq has been sent to Madhya Pradesh High Court.
Besides them, the Collegium has also recommended transfer of Justice Sanjay Yadav from Madhya Pradesh High Court to Allahabad High Court, while Justice Vineet Kothari has been sent to Gujarat High Court from Madras High Court.
Justice Rajesh Bindal has been transferred from Jammu and Kashmir High Court to Calcutta High Court, it said, adding that Justice Joymalya Bagchi has been sent to Andhra Pradesh Hugh Court from Calcutta High Court and Justice Satish Chandra Sharma has been sent from Madhya Pradesh High Court to Karnataka High Court.
Besides Justice Muralidhar , the collegium has also approved the elevation of four judges as Chief Justices of different High Courts.
According to the Supreme Court website, the Collegium, in its meeting held on December 14, has also approved the proposal to elevate Delhi High Court judge Justice Hima Kohli as Chief Justice of Telangana High Court, Calcutta High Court judge Justice Sanjib Banerjee as Chief Justice of Madras High Court.
Besides them, the Collegium has also okayed the proposal to elevate Allahabad High Court judge Pankaj Mithal as Chief Justice of Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand High Court judge Sudhanshu Dhulia as Gauhati High Court Chief Justice.
Apart from Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, Justices NV Ramana, RF Nariman, UU Lalit and AM Khanwilkar are part of the 5-judge Collegium.
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