Amid row, Justices Dinesh Maheshwari, Sanjiv Khanna appointed Supreme Court judges

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New Delhi | Published: January 17, 2019 11:12:09 AM

Justice Dinesh Maheshwari, Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court, and Justice Sanjiv Khanna of Delhi High Court were on Wednesday appointed as judges of the Supreme Court following Presidential approval.

The Ministry of Law and Justice notified the appointment of Justice Maheshwari and Justice Khanna. In exercise of the powers conferred by clause (2) of Article 124 of the Constitution of India, the President approved the appointments.

Justice Dinesh Maheshwari, Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court, and Justice Sanjiv Khanna of Delhi High Court were on Wednesday appointed as judges of the Supreme Court following Presidential approval. The notification comes six days after the apex court Collegium, headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, recommended their elevation. The Collegium’s decision to elevate Justices Khanna and Maheshwari created quite an uproar as it was different from the decision taken by the collegium in December.

The Ministry of Law and Justice notified the appointment of Justice Maheshwari and Justice Khanna. In exercise of the powers conferred by clause (2) of Article 124 of the Constitution of India, the President approved the appointments.

Last year in December, the Collegium had recommended Chief Justice of Rajasthan High Court Pradeep Nandrajog and Chief Justice of Delhi High Court Rajendra Menon for elevation to the apex court. However this year in January, the new Collegium — after Justice Madan Lokur retired — held its first meeting and decided to elevate Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court Dinesh Maheshwari and Delhi High Court chief justice Sanjeev Khanna to the top court. That Collegium changed after Justice Madan Lokur retired on December 30 and Justice Arun Mishra was inducted.

The Supreme Court has a new Collegium that held its first meeting on January 10. The Collegium has five most senior judges of the Supreme Court, has seen the induction of Justice Arun Mishra after the retirement of Justice Madan Lokur on December 30.

Meanwhile, the move did not go down well with some of the former justices who have expressed their displeasure and one of them has even written to President Ram Nath Kovind. According to a report by The Indian Express, a former judge of Delhi High Court Kailash Gambhir has written to President Ram Nath Kovind saying the Collegium’s resolution to elevate Justice Sanjeev Khanna was ‘appalling and outrageous’ because an “earth-shattering decision has been taken to supersede as many as 32 judges, which include many Chief Justices, casting aspersions on their intellect, merit and integrity.”

Justice Chelameswar, who retired last year, said that “this is exactly why I refused to attend the Collegium meetings in 2016″. On the other hand, former Delhi chief justice AP Shah said that this case shows that the Collegium system continues to be opaque, secretive and unaccountable.

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