New Delhi: Supreme Court judge Justice H L
Gokhale was superseded seven times in three years as Chief
Justice of Allahabad High Court and later transferred as Chief
Justice of Madras High Court before being elevated to apex
court on April 30, 2010.
The Law Ministry had earlier refused to share the
information in reply to an RTI application saying no such
list of Chief Justices of High Courts, who have been
superseded in their selection as apex court judges, is
maintained by it.
Justice Gokhale was superseded between 2007 and 2010,
the reply shows.
The Ministry has now disclosed the information about
Supreme Court judges who were superseded as Chief Justices of
High Courts at least once before being elevated to the apex
court since the year 2005 following an order by the Central
Generally, Chief Justices of High Courts based on their
seniority are selected for elevation to the apex court by the
collegium but in some cases selection is not done as per the
seniority list. The list provided by the Law Ministry contains
names of only those Judges who were ultimately selected for
Supreme Court after being superseded at least once.
The reply shows Justice A K Patnaik was superseded five
times during 2007-09 before being elevated to Supreme Court on
November 17, 2009. Justice Patnaik was appointed as Chief
Justice of Chattisgarh High Court March 14, 2005 and on
transfer on October 2, 2005 assumed charge as Chief Justice of
the Madhya Pradesh High Court.
Justice Gyan Sudha Mishra, who assumed charge of the
Jharkhand High Court on July 13, 2008, was superseded five
times between 2008-10 before being appointed at the apex court
April 30, 2010.
The list provided by Law Ministry to activist S C
Agrawal revealed names of 20 Chief Justices of High Courts who
were superseded before being elevated to the Supreme Court
since the year 2005.