P Chidambaram said that as the law stands now, the recommendations made by the Collegium that comprises five senior-most judges including the CJI, are final. He questioned the government on what grounds the decision was taken to hold Justice KM Joseph's elevation.
Senior Congress leader and former Union minister P Chidambaram today slammed the government for holding back the file of Uttarakhand Chief Justice KM Joseph’s appointment as a judge in the Supreme Court. He questioned the government on what grounds it came at this decision despite a recommendation by the powerful Collegium. He said that as the law stands now, the recommendations made by the Collegium that comprises five senior-most judges including the CJI, are final.
In a series of tweets this morning, Chidambaram, who himself is a lawyer, welcomed Indu Malhotra’s elevation and expressed disappointment over delay in Justice Joesph’s appointment.
“Delighted that Ms Indu Malhotra will be sworn in as Judge of the Supreme Court tomorrow. Disappointed that Justice KM Joseph’s appointment is still on hold,” his tweet reads.
Yesterday, the Collegium’s recommendation to elevate Indu Malhotra to the post of a judge in the Supreme Court received Presidential’s nod. She will be sworn-in on Friday. However, the government did not clear the file of Justice KM Joseph. The Congress has alleged that the government held back his file because of his 2016 decision to strike down the Centre’s move to impose President’s Rule in the Uttarakhand. The Collegium had on January 10 earlier this year recommended their names for elevation to the top court.
Chidambaram also pointed out the same, asking whether it was his religion that was the reason behind the delay. “What is holding up Justice K M Joseph’s appointment? His State or his religion or his judgement in the Uttarakhand case?” Chidambaram pointed out in another tweet.
“As the law stands now, the recommendation of the SC collegium is final and binding in the appointment of judges. Is the Modi government above the law?” he added in another tweet.
Justice KM Joseph had in 2016 struck down the Central government’s decision to impose the President’s Rule in Uttarakhand and reinstated the Congress government. Since then, the government has been allegedly blocking the Collegium’s decision to transfer him to Andhra Pradesh and later to appoint him as a judge in the Supreme Court.