Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi has already delivered the verdict in the historic Ayodhya case. During the verdict of the second-longest heard case, the Supreme Court on Saturday allowed the construction of Ram temple while also saying that an alternate land of 5 acres will be given to Muslims. The court has given the central government 3 months to formulate a scheme for the trust that will make necessary regulations for the management of the trust.
Earlier on October 16, the judgement in Ayodhya Ram Janmabhoomi case was reserved by the 5-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, which includes Justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazeer after a marathon hearing of 40 days.
As Justice Gogoi is nearing his retirement on November 17, he is yet to deliver verdicts in some other important cases.
Rafale review petition
Petitioners in Rafale case had sought a review of the Supreme Court verdict, which had dismissed the plea and had challenged India’s agreement with France in the procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets. Jointly filed by advocate Prashant Bhushan, former Union Ministers Arun Shourie and Yashwant Sinha, the review petition is now seeking an investigation into the Rafale deal on the basis of secret “stolen documents”.
Sabarimala review plea
Last September, a judgement by the five-judge bench had allowed women to enter the Ayyappa Shrine at Sabarimala and participate in the 40-day ritual pilgrimage. The majority judgment had clearly upheld the right of women to worship on equal footing as men and had decried the 'traditions' that placed women at a disadvantage. However, Justice Malhotra- the sole woman judge on the bench had given a sharply worded dissenting opinion, where she argued that the judiciary could not "impose its own values" on faith, and must accept beliefs as a matter of faith.
As many as 48 review petitions had been filed against the verdict, with the Supreme Court under CJI Gogoi hearing the matter in open court for an entire day on February 6 this year.
Contempt case against Rahul Gandhi
CJI Ranjan Gogoi is also likely to announce the judgement on a criminal contempt plea filed by BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi against former Congress president Rahul Gandhi for attributing the “chowkidaar chor hai” remark to the apex court. Gandhi had, however, apologised for “wrongly attributing” the remarks and had requested for the criminal contempt proceedings against him to be closed.
Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, arguing on behalf of Lekhi, had told the bench that Gandhi's apology should be rejected and action must be taken against him.
The constitutional validity of Finance Act 2017
In April, a bench led by Gogoi had reserved its judgement on a number of petitions that challenged the Constitutional validity of the Finance Act 2017 arguing that it was passed by Parliament as a money bill. One of the pleas alleged that the Centre was taking over the rights to decide the terms and conditions of tribunal members.
The Centre, however, has contended that the Finance Act 2017 was referred to as a money bill as it had provisions to deal with salaries and allowance to be paid to members of all tribunals.
If CJI should come under RTI
The apex court is set to pronounce if the office of Chief Justice of India should fall under the ambit of the Right To Information (RTI) Act. The Supreme Court secretary-general had filed a plea challenging the January 2010 verdict of the Delhi High Court ruling that the CJI’s office was a “public authority” and that it should come under the RTI act.
The Delhi High Court in July 2010 had passed a verdict stating that the CJI Office and the SC were a "public authority" which would come under the ambit of the RTI Act.
The SC Secretary-General had challenged the verdict, stating that this would create problems in judicial functioning, if the administrative decisions made by the Supreme Court, including appointments of judges, became open to RTI scrutiny.