Supreme Court crisis settled, say Attorney General, Bar Council of India

Four dissenting judges on Friday had launched a public attack against the Chief Justice of India at a news conference.

Supreme Court crisis settled, say Attorney General, Bar Council of India
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New Delhi: The crisis that rocked the Supreme Court seems to have abated on Monday with the Attorney General and the Bar Council of India saying it has been "settled" and resolved "internally".

"The story is now over, said the BCI chairman Manan Kumar Mishra, three days after the four dissenting judges - Justices J Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan B Lokur and Kurian Joseph - launched a public attack against the Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra at a news conference.

Mishra, who led a seven-member delegation and held hectic parleys with 15 judges including the Chief Justice on Saturday, told a press conference that all the four top judges have resolved the differences and were attending the court.

He said the vexed issues flagged by the four revolting judges on Friday were "internal issues of the family" which have been resolved internally, PTI reported.

On the other hand, Attorney General KK Venugopal also said, "There was an informal meeting in the morning (before the commencement of the court). Now everything has been settled," Venugopal told the media, describing the developments in the top court since January 12, 2018, as "a storm in a teacup".

"The full court met (on Monday morning). It seems that everything is settled. Everything is hunky dory," he added, as per IANS.

Meanwhile, the benches in Court Number two, three, four and five headed by the rebel judges, Justice Chelameswar, Justice Gogoi, Justice Lokur and Justice Joseph, respectively attended to their business as usual. 

Here's what happened:

The four judges of the apex court had on Friday raised questions on 'selective' case allocation and certain judicial orders.

Justice Chelameswar, the second senior judge after Chief Justice Dipak Misra, himself had described as an "extraordinary event" in the annals of the Indian judiciary when the judges addressed a joint news conference during which he had said "sometimes administration of the Supreme Court is not in order and many things which are less than desirable have happened in the last few months."

The judge had accused Justice Misra of not taking any "remedial measures" on some of the issues which affected the functioning of the apex court that they had raised. Justice Misra became the CJI on August 28, 2017, and he is due to retire from on October 2 this year.

Unless this institution is preserved, "democracy will not survive" in this country, Justice Chelameswar had said at the unscheduled press conference. The presser was held at his residence.

Justice Chelameswar had also said that all the four judges "failed to persuade CJI that certain things are not in order and therefore you should take remedial measures. Unfortunately, our efforts failed."

Asked what these issues were, he had said they included the "allocation of cases by CJI", and had added, "we owe a responsibility to the institution and the nation. Our efforts have failed in convincing CJI to take steps to protect the institution."

However, no details were immediately available as to how issues like the "selective" case allocation and certain judicial orders by Justice Misra raised by the four dissenters at their press conference on Friday last were sorted out. There was also no official word from the CJI office yet.

(With Agency inputs)

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