The Supreme Court collegium today made public the names it has recommended for appointment as chief justices of 10 high courts.
The recommendations, made on January 11 by the collegium comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra, and Justices J Chelameswar and Ranjan Gogoi, have been posted on the official website of the apex court.
The recommendations have been made for the high courts of Delhi, Meghalaya, Chhattisgarh, Calcutta, Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, Tripura, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala and Manipur.
The collegium has recommended Justice Aniruddha Bose, a senior judge of the Calcutta High Court, for appointment as the chief justice of Delhi High Court, the position which was vacant since the retirement of Justice G Rohini on April 13 last year.
Justice Gita Mittal has been the Acting Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court since then.
The collegium has also recommended names of two incumbent chief justices—of Chhattisgarh and Meghalaya HCs—for transfer to other high courts.
While Chief Justice of the Chhattisgarh High Court, Justice T B Radhakrishnan, has been recommended to be transferred to Telangana and Andhra Pradesh HC, Justice Dinesh Maheshwari, Chief Justice of Meghalaya HC, has been proposed for the post of the new chief justice of Karnataka HC. The name of Justice Tarun Agrawala, the senior-most judge of the Allahabad High Court, has been approved for appointment as the chief justice of Meghalaya High Court. The apex court also invoked a provision of Memorandum of Procedure (MoP), which is yet to be finalised, for recommending appointment of chief justices of Calcutta and Kerala High Courts.
Both the Centre and the apex court collegium have agreed on all provisions of MoP barring the clause which empowers the Union government to reject any recommendation on the ground of national security.
The Centre did not get back to the collegium after the latter refused to acknowledge its concern with respect to the clause.
The notification said that the collegium has recommended the names of acting chief justices of Calcutta and Kerala HCs as chief justices of their own high courts considering their retirement was due this year.
The collegium has approved elevation of Justice Jyotirmay Bhattacharya and Justice Antony Dominic as chief justices of Calcutta and Kerala HCs respectively.
“It is made clear that the collegium while making the above recommendation is conscious of the fact that Justice Jyotirmay Bhattacharya hails from Calcutta High Court and is due to retire in September this year.
“In this connection, the collegium has invoked the provision of the Memorandum of Procedure which provides for elevation of a puisne(a term used for any other judge who is junior to the chief justice) judge as chief justice in his own high court if he has one year or less to retire,” the collegium said.
The collegium put forward the same ground for approving the elevation of Justice Dominic.
Justice Abhilasha Kumari, a judge in the Gujarat High Court, has been recommended to be appointed as the chief justice of Manipur HC.
The name of Justice Ajay Kumar Tripathi of the Patna High Court has been proposed for appointment as chief justice of Chhattisgarh HC, while Justice Surya Kant has been recommended for elevation as chief justice of the Himachal Pradesh HC. Justice Ajay Rastogi, a judge of the Rajasthan High Court, has been nominated as chief justice of the Tripura High Court.
The collegium has also recommended transfer of Guwahati High Court judge Justice Hrishikesh Roy to Kerala High Court. At its meeting on January 10, the collegium also recommended the elevation of Justice Sheo Kumar Singh, currently an Additional Judge, as a Permanent Judge of the Allahabad High Court.