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'You can't give warning': Law Minister Kiren Rijiju on SC's ultimatum to Centre on elevation of HC judges

Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju asserted that no one can give a 'warning' to anyone, amid the fact the court runs by the constitution.

Ajeet Kumar Edited By: Ajeet Kumar @Ajeet1994 New Delhi Updated on: February 04, 2023 21:46 IST
Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju
Image Source : PTI Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju

Amid the tussle between the Centre and the Supreme Court, the law minister has again criticised the latter for giving an ultimatum to the government on the collegium's pending recommendations for the elevation of five high court judges to the Apex Court. While addressing a gathering, Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju, who was in Uttar Pradesh's Prayagraj, said he saw a media report about the ultimatum given by the Apex court on Friday. He asserted that no one can give warning to anyone, amid the fact the court runs by the constitution.  

"I saw a media report today that stated- Supreme Court has given a warning...The Indian Constitution is our guide. No one can give a warning to anyone," he said.  "The masters of this country are the people of this country. We are only workers. If there is a master, it is the public. If there is a guide, the Constitution is our guide," he said.

"According to the Constitution, this country will be run as people want it to be run. You can't give a warning to anyone," he added. Notably, his critical comments came in the backdrop of the Supreme Court giving a warning to the Centre over its delay in clearing the names.

Centre clears names of five judges 

Meanwhile, a day after the staunch warning, the BJP-led government cleared the names of at least five judges which was recommended by the Collegium on December 13 last year. Law Minister, in a microblogging post, confirmed the appointment of Justice Pankaj Mithal, Chief Justice, Rajasthan High Court; Justice Sanjay Karol, Chief Justice, Patna High Court; Justice P V Sanjay Kumar, Chief Justice, Manipur High Court; Justice Ahsanuddin Amanullah of Patna High Court; and Justice Manoj Misra of Allahabad High Court as apex court judges. As per news agency PTI sources, all five newly appointed judges will take the oath of office on Monday, February 6.

It is worth mentioning, at present the top court is functioning with 27 judges, including the Chief Justice of India. Its sanctioned strength, including the CJI, is 34. Their appointments come amidst strong observations by a Supreme Court bench questioning the delay on part of the government in appointing and transferring judges based on the recommendations of the SC Collegium. A senior government functionary said the five appointments have nothing to do with the bench's observation and were made after the Cente took a considered decision.

(With inputs from agencies)

Also Read: Centre vs Judiciary: Judges don't face elections or public scrutiny, says Law Minister Kiren Rijiju

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