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Not mandatory to refer impeachment notice to inquiry committee: RS official

Not mandatory to refer impeachment notice to inquiry committee: RS official

Two Congress members of Parliament (MPs) moved the Supreme Court on Monday challenging the rejection of an impeachment notice against Chief Justice Dipak Misra by Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu.

The bench comprises of justices S.A. Bobde, A.K. Sikri, N.V. Ramana, Arun Mishra and A.K. Goel - the 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th most senior judges.

The next four senior-most judges - who along with the Chief Justice make up the collegium - would also have found it hard to sit on judgment as they had complained at an unparalleled media conference in January about the way in which Justice Misra was allocating cases.

The Constitution bench will be headed by Justice AK Sikri, who is the sixth most senior judge in the Supreme Court. Sibal had said that this writ could not be mentioned anywhere else.

"We can not allow any of our pillars of governance to be weakened by any thought, word or action", said Naidu, ascribing his quick decision to the severity of the charges directed at the Chief Justice.

The petition called for a declaration that the Vice President as chairman of the Rajya Sabha can not exercise discretion and that he must set up an inquiry panel under the Judges' Inquiry Act, to probe the allegations against CJI Misra. Said Sibal: "I'm not asking for a relief, I'm just asking for a listing".

Both Justice Chelameswar and Justice Kaul went into a huddle and asked Sibal and Bhushan to come Tuesday so they could take a call on the issue.

Along with Justice Chelameswar, Justice SK Kaul was on the bench that heard the matter.

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Left defenseless on the ropes and taking a ton of additional punishment, referee Howard John Foster stopped the fight. Bellew weaved his way back in as the first round wore on, but a big overhand near the bell gave it to Haye .

On 23 April, Naidu, Vice-President of India and Chairman of the Rajya Sabha, had rejected the impeachment motion, holding it was "neither legal nor desirable or proper" to admit it.

Advocate Bhushan, who appeared along with Sibal, said according to rules, the CJI is disabled to pass any order and only the senior-most judge can decide on the listing of the petition.

It was also stated that if Naidu's order were to be accepted as legally correct, it would be tantamount to having a two- stage adjudicatory process with regard to a notice of motion filed under the Judges (Inquiry) Act, 1968.

The Congress in its petition said the decision to reject their impeachment motion by the Vice President reflected "serious infirmity".

"It is not mandatory to refer such a notice to an inquiry committee".

Then petitioners sought a direction from the SC to the RS chairman to immediately constitute an inquiry committee under the Judges Inquiry Act to probe the charges against CJI mentioned in the removal motion.

Naidu had said that the notice lacked merit.


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