SC to examine plea to regulate CJI's roster power

ANI | Updated: Apr 13, 2018 17:38 IST

New Delhi [India], Apr. 13 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Friday decided to examine plea seeking to regulate Chief Justice of India's (CJI) discretionary power to constitute benches and allocate important cases.

The petition was filed by senior apex court lawyer Shanti Bhushan.

Last week, Bhushan approached the top court to regulate the power of CJI Dipak Misra.

In his petition, Bhushan sought a check on the powers of the CJI, who is the 'master of the roster' and allocates hearing of cases to different courts.

"The petition raises a very fundamental issue going to the root of the functioning of the Supreme Court of India and as such is very critical to the interpretation of the Constitution of India and the Rule of Law in India," stated Bhushan in his petition.

"The CJI could not have heard this case himself quite apart from exercising his power as master of roster in allocating a bench to hear this case and constituting a Constitution Bench that finally pronounced the order declaring the Chief Justice of India as master of roster. The principle of master of roster cannot be applicable to a case where the CJI is himself involved," Bhushan added.

On January 12, four Supreme Court judges- Justices Jasti Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, M.B. Lokur and Kurien Joseph in a press conference, claimed that CJI Misra was assigning important cases in an arbitrary manner to junior judges, ignoring them, who are the senior judges of the apex court.

On March 27, the opposition camp proposed a plan to draft an impeachment motion against the CJI in relation to the matters raised by the four judges. (ANI)